Minister promotes wider use of railway transport

25Nov 2018
By Guardian Reporter
Guardian On Sunday
Minister promotes wider use of railway transport

WORKS, Communications and Transport Deputy Minister Atashasta Nditiye has said it is important to make full use of railway transport if the country is to move forward in the sector.

WORKS, Communications and Transport Deputy Minister Atashasta Nditiye

He was speaking during a visit to Tanga port and Moa village in the district where four rogue ports have been formalized.

The deputy minister said the government has now decided to revive all railway lines and upgrade them to standard gauge to improve the transport of cargo destined to and from the port.

“There are so many customers who desire to use rail transport for their exports and imports,” he said.

He pointed out that the country was undertaking development according to its model without imitating any country.

“We do things in accordance to our plans,” he said, adding that plans to construct the Arusha-Manyara- Musoma railway were in progress.

The Tanga port management commended government efforts to revive the Tanga-Arusha railway line, saying it would increase cargo, especially bulk cargo, destined for Tanga port.

Tanga Port Manager Percival Salama described the revival of the railway line as vital in the port’s management plans to make the port a hub for the east, central and southern African region in the next ten years.

He said the port was prepared for increased cargo handling by acquiring new cargo handling equipment and sites for building dry ports in Arusha and Isaka in its quest to move near the port users.

According to him, Arusha Regional Commissioner had already availed a 500-acre piece of land for the construction of a dry port.

He asked security and traffic police to stop harassing foreigners using the port in order to increase the number of customers using the port in the EAC bloc.

He urged the officers to conduct their work with diligence as this will also help to improve the country’s economy.

The Tanga-Arusha railway line’s revival will not only increase business between the two regions but also reduce the cost of transporting goods between the regions, the manager pointed out.

He said through collaboration of government officials in Tanga, Kilimanjaro, Arusha and Manyara regions and TRA officials, the port has been able to increase its cargo handling to 863,000 tonnes annually.

If well connected to other regions, he said, the railway line could turn Tanga port into an east, central and southern Africa cargo hub.