TAZARA and TAZAMA get a face lift.

Position:Tanzania and Zambia railway authority; Tanzania and Zambia oil pipelines

The Tanzania and Zambia railway authority (TAZARA) and Tanzania and Zambia oil pipelines (TAZAMA) will both, from the end of this year, get fresh leases of life that should turn them around into profitable ventures.

China, which built TAZARA 21 years ago for Tanzania and Zambia, will soon provide 21 locomotive engines and 21 experts for its maintenance.

According to China's Assistant Minister of Foreign Trade and Economic cooperation Mr Sun Guangxzang, this assistance is meant to improve goods conveyance on the line. Mr Guangxzang said TAZARA had failed to meet the designated traffic of 2m tonnes per year, instead only averaging around 800,000 to 1 m tonnes with the best fiscal year being 1977 and 1988 when it carried 1.273m tonnes.

Mr Guangxzang who was speaking in Lusaka recently during the ninth tripartite talks on TAZARA, said there was a need to upgrade or renovate it. He said that with funds permitting, China will help TAZARA build sidings along the rail line in order to service the large farming community bordering it. China has supported TAZARA through the provision of technical expertise, spare parts, equipment for maintenance and operations, and staff training.

TAZAMA on the other hand, will get $45m from The World Bank and the European Investment Bank for the complete rehabilitation of its pipelines and the construction of...

To continue reading