Africa Mining Logistics: $22.4m Chinese lifeline for Tanzania–Zambia railway project

The Tanzania-Zambia Railway (Tanzania-Zambia)

The Tanzania-Zambia Railway (Tanzania-Zambia)

China has lent Zambia and Tanzania $22.4-million to buy locomotives and rolling stock for a railway that carries copper to Tanzania’s Indian Ocean port of Dar es Salaam, a spokesperson for the railway said on Tuesday.

The loss-making line is an important route for copper exports from Zambia and the Democratic Republic of Congo, Africa’s top copper producer, but the firm transporting the metal struggles to pay its workers, prompting strikes.

The Tanzania–Zambia Railway Authority (Tazara) has been hit by a slump in cargo and passenger traffic and undercapitalisation over the past decade. Its freight volumes plunged to less than 90 000 metric tonnes in the year to June from about 630 000 metric tonnes a decade earlier. Tanzania in October said it would inject six-billion shillings ($3-million) into Tazara.

“The new locomotives are expected to uplift the current daily availability of mainline locomotives by 33% to an average of 16 locomotives,” Tazara spokesperson Conrad Simuchile said in a statement.

The funds are an interest-free loan from the Chinese government to Tanzania and Zambia to support Tazara. The four new locomotives are expected to improve the operations of Tazara, which has struggled with old, infrequently maintained equipment, Simuchile said.(Source: Miningweekly)

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s