National Express wins multi-million-euro Casablanca contract

British transport firm is set to double its presence in Morocco with Casablanca bus contract.
Thursday 17/10/2019
Goodbye to Casablanca's decaying and overcrowded Mdina buses
Goodbye to Casablanca's decaying and overcrowded Mdina buses

CASABLANCA - British transport firm National Express Group Plc is set to double its presence in Morocco after sealing a 15-year bus contract in Casablanca through its Spanish and Moroccan unit ALSA.

National Express, already the largest bus operator in Morocco won on Wednesday the contract worth more than 1 billion euros in revenue over its term.

“As in other Moroccan cities, there is opportunity for further growth in other local Casablanca transport markets, such as school buses and tourist services,’ the company said.

The new contract will end Casablancans’ daily nightmare of decaying, overcrowded and insecure buses whose average seven-year longevity was exceeded by ten years.

The contract will start next month with an initial 400 buses, which will increase to 700 next year and is expected to carry 100 million passengers annually.

It is expected to make a small contribution to this year’s and next year’s earnings due to its late start in the year and start-up costs. 

Casablanca mayor Abdelaziz El Omari said in his capacity as the Vice President in charge of the urban transport sector that given the current fleet situation, efforts will be made to temporarily import buses from Europe by the end of this year and early next year, in order to secure transit transport.

Omari said that the new company was committed to preserving the workers who had been working for the “Mdina Bus” while retaining all acquired rights.

(This article originally appeared in Middle East Online)