THE EUROPEAN Investment Bank has agreed to provide €530m to Spanish national operator RENFE, releasing an initial tranche of €340m under a 25-year loan agreement last month. The remainder is to be made available during 2008.

The funding will be used to acquire 140 Civia EMUs for suburban services, as well as 412 sets of ERTMS equipment for suburban trains. A consortium of Siemens, Dimetronic and CAF has been awarded a €20·8m contract to install ERTMS equipment in 94 EMUs of classes 446, 447 and 450, with the work to be undertaken over a period of 37 months at the depots responsible for day-to-day maintenance.

Alstom has been awarded a similar contract worth €26·8m, covering 123 Civia EMUs which include the batch of 30 Civia IV trains ordered from the manufacturer last October (RG 12.07 p750). Work is to be completed within 35 months.