Tanzania has given contracts to build new railway lines worth about US$9 billion to Chinese firms, according to a Reuters report.
Tanzanian transport minister Samuel Sitta reportedly told parliament on May 30 a Chinese consortium would build a 2,561km standard gauge railway, between Dar es Salaam port, to a number of the nation’s land-locked neighbouring countries, at a cost of US$7.6 billion.
“A consortium of Chinese railway companies led by China Railway Materials (CRM) has been picked to help us build the railway line,” he reportedly said.
CRM is set to provide 10% of the funding for the project. The rest of the funding is being organised by financial adviser Rothschild, to be lent to the country by a number of banks around the globe.
Sitta beleives construction of the railway will begin in June.
Another contract has been signed, according to Sitta, with Chinese firm China Railway No.2 Engineering Group, to build a 1000km standard gauge track linking coal and iron ore mining projects.
That project is expected to cost around US$1.4 billion.
Tanzania announced earlier this year that it would spend US$14.2 billion on building a new rail network by 2020, with the long-term aim of transitioning into a regional transport hub.