Information published on 24 November 2015 in the UIC electronic newsletter "UIC eNews" Nr 474.

UIC Regional Assembly for the Middle-East (RAME) held 16th Director-Generals meeting in Istanbul

  • Middle East

Mr Ömer Yildiz, President and Director General of Turkish State Railways TCDD, to chair the UIC Middle-East Region in 2016-2017 –
UIC Regional Office for the Middle-East updated the Regional Vision 2013-2020 for the development of Railways in the Middle-East –
Three important conferences to be held in 2016: on Oil/Rail & Rail/Ports Cooperation (May in Tehran), International Business Forum (October in Istanbul), 1st International Conference on the New Rail Silk Road (November in Kazakhstan).

The 16th Meeting of the Regional Assembly for the Middle-East (RAME) of the International Union of Railways (UIC) was held on 20 November 2015 in Istanbul at the kind invitation of Turkish State Railways (TCDD). The meeting was chaired by Mr Ömer Yidliz, who succeeded Mr Süleyman Karaman as President and Director General of TCDD, together with Mr Jean-Pierre Loubinoux, UIC Director-General, Mr Paul Véron, UIC Coordinator for the Middle-East, Mr Abbas Nazari, RAI, Director of the UIC Middle-East Regional Office in Tehran.
The UIC Middle-East Region has three Vice Chairmen who are the Heads of Iranian Railways (RAI), Saudi Railway Organisation (SRO) and Jordan Hejaz Railway (JHR).

After a warm welcome to all participants by UIC RAME Chairman Mr Ömer Yildiz, UIC Director General Mr Jean-Pierre Loubinoux underlined in his opening address the importance of holding these meetings in a period marked by instability in many regions: “Despite tensions, division and crisis in many countries and places, it is more essential than ever to keep our international, professional, railway community, strong and coherent and effective.
On the basis of the ’Regional Vision for the Middle-Eastern Railways’ that we defined together with the involvement of all members, we have to focus all our efforts on making this vision to reality. We have to concentrate our cooperation activities on achieving an integrated, seamless, effective rail transport system for the Middle-East. We must always act in accordance with the UIC values of Unity and Solidarity between all members, and of Universality, with the objective of ensuring the success of our transport mode, for the benefit of customers and citizens in the Region".

Mr Jean-Pierre Loubinoux summarised the main cooperation activities initiated and coordinated by UIC to serve the global community of railways and ensure a successful future.
He mentioned the global “Train to Paris” campaign coordinated by UIC in connection with the COP 21 United Nations’ Conference on Climate Change to be held in Paris (with a focus on 28 November at UIC HQ), new activities on Digitalisation in the Rail sector with the launch at UIC on 30 November (under the motto: Share, Open, Connect), the increasing importance of UIC activities on Standardisation (International Railway Standards IRS) in liaison with the competent organisations IEC, ISO,.., ambitious training and educational programmes to train future generations of high-potential railway managers with the Talent strategy, Rail Executive MBA, ...

Activities of the UIC Middle-East Region in 2015

Mr Abbas Nazari, Director General International Affairs of Iranian Railways RAI, Director of the UIC Regional Office for the Middle-East, reviewed all main activities achieved at regional level and coordinated by the Regional Office in 2015.
In particular several conferences, seminars and training programmes took place in 2015 on the issues of Standardisation, Interoperability and Harmonisation (Doha, Qatar, in March-April with OTIF and CIT), Infrastructure, Asset Management, ERTMS, SATLOC and Train Control (Dead Sea, Jordan in May), training programme on the carriage of dangerous goods (MERTCe, Eskisehir, Turkey with CIT).

All the main results of these conferences and seminars are available to RAME members in the form of a CD/DVD which can be obtained from the Middle-East Regional Office (Tehran, or UIC (

As one of its priority tasks, the Regional Office succeeded in updating the 2013-2020 ’Regional Vision for the development of Railways in the Middle-East’.
In this context the new official ’UIC RAME Map’ including all new UIC Members and new railway projects in the Middle-East was also delivered to members.

Action Plan 2016-2017 for the UIC Middle-East Region

RAME members approved the UIC RAME Action Plan for 2016-2017.

Among other activities, three important conferences will be planned during next year:

- the 1st UIC RAME Oil/Rail & Rail/Ports conference to be held in May 2016 in Tehran
- the UIC RAME Rail Business Forum planned in October in Istanbul with the participation of national authorities, international organisations, financial institutions, potential investors and partners
- the 1st international Conference on the New Rail Silk Road to be jointly organised by ITE Group, together with the UIC Asian and Middle-Eastern Regions.

Governance of the UIC Middle-East Region in 2016-2017: renewal of Mr Yildiz’s mandate as Chairman

Considering the successful leadership and management of the UIC Middle-East Region by TCDD on one hand and the important and effective work achieved by the Regional Office in Iran on the other hand, the Regional Assembly approved, at the proposal of the UIC Director General, to maintain the current governance for the next two-year term with the TCDD President Mr Ömer Yildiz (TCDD) as RAME Chairman, three Vice Chairmen from RAI (Mr Mohsen Pour Seyed Aghaie, Vice Minister, Iran), SRO (HE Mr Mohammed Khalid Al Suwaiket, Saudi Arabia), JHR (Mr Salah Al Louzi, Jordan) and the UIC Regional Office for the Middle-East based in Tehran to stimulate the activities and implement the RAME decisions.

For further information please contact Mr Paul Véron, UIC Director of Communications, Coordinator for the Middle-East: