UAE's Etihad Rail: 'My children ask me what the trains look like and how far they go'

International Women’s Day video released by the railway operator features several women working on the project


Nasreen Abdulla

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Published: Wed 8 Mar 2023, 6:02 PM

On International Women’s Day, Etihad Rail released a video featuring several women who work on the prestigious project, including the first female Emirati train captain.

In a tweet the company wrote: "On #InternationalWomensDay, Etihad Rail is proud to highlight the achievements of its female colleagues in the railway sector. This year’s theme – ‘Embracing Equity’ – forms a key part of Etihad Rail’s mission, as the company strives to ensure a diverse and inclusive workplace."

In the video, one of the female employees said that the best part of the job was that the rail project had become part of her family. “My children always ask me about my job at Etihad Rail,” she said in the video. “[They ask] ‘How far does the train go? We have not seen it yet. What does it look like,’” she said.

Another member said that she was involved in the project’s groundwork. “Within the team, we look after all the infrastructure maintenance planning, the fleet maintenance planning,” she said. “I think women are very good planners.”

The train captain taking pride in her profession said, "Today, I am proud to say that I am the first female Emirati train captain."

Last month, the UAE National Railway Network was inaugurated. About 38 locomotives and more than 1,000 wagons have been part of the cargo operations between four ports with an annual capacity of 60 million tonnes of goods.

The 900km pan-UAE network has been completed according to the approved schedule and budget, with cargo train operations launched across the Emirates.

In the video shared by the company, another female member said she loved that her job had the power to change lives. “You leave something behind,” she said.

Since it was established in June 2009 by a federal mandate, the Etihad Rail has become one of the most keenly awaited projects in the UAE. While businesses look forward to having cost-effective and sustainable transport facilities, many residents are dreaming of being able to navigate the country using trains.

“Today at our company, women hold several administrative, operational and leadership roles,” said another female staff.

The Etihad Rail project will connect all seven emirates and 11 major cities starting from the UAE’s border with Saudi Arabia up to the country’s border with Oman. It is expected to revolutionise travel in the country when it is complete.

When asked what they would say to their future self, one said “Be your number one supporter. Be proud of your accomplishments.”

"Just continue doing what you are doing,” said another. “You are on the right path.”

Another member asked her colleagues to be proud. "Regardless of where you are, regardless of the position you are in, you were part of this great national project. You are part of the Etihad Rail."


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