His Highness Shaikh/ Tamimi Bin Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani issued the Law No. (11) of 2020 regarding the Qatari Railways
Since the establishment of the Qatar Railways Company as a joint stock company owned by the Steering Committee on the operation of rail, there has been an indispensable need for a complete law to regulate the rail projects as well as the organization and functioning of this important means of transportation. Therefore, the Law No. (11) of 2020 (the “Railways Law”) is of special important to the economy of the State of Qatar.
The Railways Law regulates the main aspects related to the operation, activities, licensing and qualification and classification of contractors or operators who perform activities related to railways. This is in addition to the authorities and competence of the Ministry of Transportations and Communications (the “Ministry”) related to railways and it also differentiates between the jurisdiction of the Ministry and jurisdiction and competence of the Qatar Railways Company.
DIFFERENTIATING BETWEEN THE JURISDICTION OF THE MINISTRY AND THE SAME OF QATAR RAILWAYS COMPANY
To avoid any conflict of competence or jurisdiction between the Ministry and Qatar Railways Company, the Railways Law differentiated between the competence and jurisdiction of the two entities of follows:
The authorities of the Ministry include which include the following:
- 1. Planning and regulating the railways networks in the country,
- 2. Regulating the construction works related to railways and operation of the same,
- 3. Ensuring that all licenses related to operation, organization or technical review of matters related to safety and accidents are in compliance with the terms and conditions,
- 4. Concluding contracts and memorandum of understanding related to transportation of people and goods by railways with any entity whether inside or outside the country.
- 5. Issuing necessary licenses related to construction of infrastructure of railways,
- 6. Adopting specifications and technical standards related to development and maintenance of railways networks,
- 7. Recommending the rules and standards related to safety of operations, and
- 8. Qualification and classification of contractors and operators.
On the other hand, the jurisdiction of the Qatar Railways Company includes the following:
- 1. Suggesting the entire plan of the national railways network and submitting the same to the Ministry,
- 2. Recommending the integration plan between the railways and main transportation network of the country,
- 3. Inspecting the drivers and conductors as well as the safety and control employees,
- 4. Securing the operation of railways,
- 5. Determining the standards and technical specifications of railways,
- 6. Suggesting the fee scheme related to railways,
- 7. Supervising the contractors, consultants and persons in charge of administering the projects, and
- 8. Any other tasks to be assigned by the competent minister.
The Railways Law states in Article (5) that a contractor, consultant or operator of any activity related to railways or its infrastructure shall be classified and registered with the Ministry in order to perform any work related to constructions, contracting, consultation and/or operation related work of railways.
The Railways Law obliges the owner, operator and contractor to make sure that it:
- 1. Takes all necessary measures to mitigate the risks that may result out of performing their works,
- 2. Operates the railways in a safe manner and to maintain the general safety requirements during its operation as per the applicable laws,
- 3. Submits to the Ministry and information that it may requires, and
- 4. Does not carry out any activity that jeopardizes any person’s safety while using the railways,
- 5. Maintains the railways in light of the requirements of safety certificates, and
Obtains the Ministry’s approvals before it makes any material change in the systems and operations of railways or their infrastructure.
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