n Spain’s Andalucía region has proposed that the Ministry of Development takes back responsibility for infrastructure spending on the east-west routes that the region has supported since 1985. A regional passenger service may emerge when Andalucía negotiates a new agreement with Renfe from January 2001.

n Turkish Transport Minister Enis Oksuz visited Georgia last month in an attempt to restart the stalled Kars - Tbilisi rail link, which foundered for lack of financing on the Georgian portion.

n The Spanish government is offering a loan to fund construction of a new route from Silifkeand in Turkey to the border with Iraq. A joint working group is to conduct a feasibility study.

n Look for the Saudi Arabian Transport Ministry to appoint consultants to advise on financing two rail extensions costing up to 17bn riyals. Communications minister Nasser bin Muhammad al-Saloum said last month that feasibility studies had backed plans for an east-west line linking Riyadh and Jeddah and a line from Riyadh to phosphate mines in the northeast.

n Belgium’s Walloon regional government is planning to build a fast rail link to Brussels South Charleroi Airport as part of an airport expansion programme.

n The French town of Bayonne and the Basque region of Spain have launched plans for a 50 km cross-border light rail link from Biarritz to San Sebastian, with dual-system LRVs using the existing ET line between San Sebastian and Hendaye.

n The government of Bangladesh is planning to offer a BOT concession to build a 51 km elevated metro network in Dhaka. The 30-year concession would grant five years for construction and 25 years for operation.

n California’s Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority has announced plans to build a further three light rail routes in San Jose, adding 19·3 km to the growing network. Lines on Santa Clara Street and Capitol Expressway would follow the Tasman, Vasona and Capitol lines, with construction starting in 2004.