Australia: Western Australia government is to spend A$1m building a 1·5 km link to a wood chip mill in Albany. Westnet is to construct the line, with the state meeting interest costs over four years.

Victorian Transport Minister Peter Batchelor has identified regauging the Mildura line next year as a priority under the A$96m gauge standardisation plan. The Kulwin and Robinvale lines will be converted by late 2004.

Brazil: Terminal operator Katoen Natie intends to open intermodal depots at Suape, Arauc? ria and Camaçari.

Bulgaria: Arcadis G&M has been awarded a contract from the Ministry of Transport & Communications to define the business case for a Bulgaria - Macedonia rail link.

A ceremony at Zli Dol tunnel on June 12 marked completion of the Sofia - Karlovo - Burgas upgrade. Sections totalling 70route-km were rebuilt for 160 km/h by ZS Brno under a €18·7m contract funded by the EU.

Canada: The Competition Bureau has found no grounds for intervention in the proposed Canadian National/Wisconsin Central merger. A ruling from the US Surface Transportation Board is expected by September 7.

Egypt: Two air-conditioned trainsets have been introduced between Cairo and Marsa Matruh.

ENR was expected to start work in July on the construction of new suburban stations in Giza and Sixth of October City.

Germany: A DM40m container terminal has been opened at Leipzig, capable of handling 500 containers/day.

Ghana: Ghana Railway Corp is undertaking a three-year passenger coach refurbishment programme. A total of 21 vehicles have been refurbished so far.

Hungary: MÁV and TriGr? nit have established Ferihegy Express Kft to build a 23 km link between Budapest Nyugati station and Ferihegy airport in the next two years at a cost of HF20bn. The joint venture will supervise construction work and the upgrading of existing routes, and will be responsible for train operations.

India: South Central Railway has launched a Rs700m plan to develop a suburban network around Hyderabad by the end of next year, including the construction of 10 new stations. A second phase would include a branch to Shamshabad airport and a cross-city link between Hyderabad and Kachiguda.

International: On June 10 the Kazakh government suspended Tajikistan- Russia services via Kazakhstan, citing debts that remain unpaid by the Tajikistangovernment.

Kenya: KRC's computerised freight tracking system was launched on June 21. The European Union provided 570m shillings to fund the RailTracker project.

Nigeria: Following a visit to Beijing last month, Transport Minister Alhaji Isah Yuguda has reached agreement for Chinese Civil Engineering Construction Corp to resume work on the stalled NRC rehabilitation programme. The government has commissioned the Nigerian Institute of Transport Technology to draw up a national transport master plan.

Poland: A 25 km metre-gauge rack line linking Szczawnica and Pinwiniczna in the Pieniny mountains has been proposed. Transport & Technologie Consult GmbH of Germany has expressed interest in co-financing the 400m zloty project.

Russia: RZD's Far East Railway is to invest 34bn roubles by 2005 on projects including the completion of electrification on the Trans-Siberian main line and tunnel reconstruction.

Spain: In the context of the planned high speed network linking Vitoria, Bilbao and San Sebasti? n, the Ministry of Development is studying routing options in Vitoria, comprising the existing rail corridor or a Lakua - Arriaga alignment in tunnel. A technical assistance contract worth up to Pts125m has gone out to tender.

USA: The Oregon state legislature has passed a bill authorising $20m immediately and $15m in two years for developing DMU commuter services on the 24 km Wilsonville - Beaverton route from 2004.

Alaska Railroad is evaluating bids for the supply of solar, wind and conventionally-powered signalling able to withstand winter weather in remote areas.

The engine frames of Long Island Rail Road's 46 GM-EMD DE30AC and DM30AC locos are to be replaced under warranty after cracking was discovered. The locos will be removed from service in pairs, starting in September.