Trans-African Rail: Angola Plans West-East Coast Line

Angola’s Ambassador to Tanzania Sandro de Oliveira at a ceremony marking the 45th anniversary of Angola’s independence from Portugal shared plans to build a trans-African railway between the ports of Dar es Salaam (Tanzania) in the east of the African continent and Lobito on its west coast in Angola.

The ambassador noted that the rail corridor could connect Angola and Tanzania through Zambia, thereby ensuring the transit of goods from the markets of America, Asia and Europe.

As part of the proposed project, a 1067 mm gauge railway from Lobitu to the border with Zambia may be built at the initial stage, followed by its further extension to the city of Kapiri Mposhi in the central province of Zambia. In turn, Kapiri-Mposhi is the western terminus of the TAZARA railway line between Zambia and Tanzania with a length of 1860 km.

Currently, the Angolan economy is mainly dependent on exports, mainly oil, to China – in 2018 their volume in value terms was estimated at $ 25 billion and exceeded the combined flows to the rest of the world.

At the same time, there are almost no trade relations between Angola and Tanzania. In 2015, Tanzania exported goods worth less than US $ 5 million to Angola, while Angolan exports in the opposite direction were estimated at only US $ 500,000. This is to some extent explained by problems with road transport, especially in Zambia during the season. rains.

With a high degree of probability, the main work on organizing the construction of the railway will be undertaken by Angola, where the average per capita income exceeds the same indicator in Tanzania and Zambia by 3 and 2 times, respectively (photo: Wikipedia)

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