Rwanda, Tanzania agree on joint construction of SGR
By Collins Mwai, Published : January 15, 2018
Rwanda and Tanzania have agreed on joint construction of a Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) from Isaka (northwestern Tanzania) to Kigali, a move which will facilitate movement of goods between the two countries.
The agreement was reached following a meeting between President Paul Kagame and his Tanzanian counterpart John Pombe Magufuli, during the former’s one-day working visit to Dar-es-Salaam, yesterday.
President Magufuli said that they have instructed the Infrastructure ministers of the two countries to meet in the coming week to deliberate on an agreeable financing model.
The meeting between the ministers will, among other aspects, consider the financing models of the project before a tender announcement for the project is issued.
Magufuli said that they expected to break ground for the project within this year.
The railway line is expected to link Dar-es-Salaam and Kigali via Isaka, and expected to improve movement of goods into and out of the country considering that over 60 per cent of Rwanda’s imports and exports go through Tanzania.
Studies conducted by the East African Community (EAC) indicate that the Tanzanian railway route would cost Rwanda about US$800 to $900 million.
The Standard Gauge Railway from the port of Mombasa via Uganda is expected to cost Rwanda close to US$1 billion, initial studies had shown.
Rwanda has maintained that the country intends to implement both routes (via Tanzania and Kenya) to increase efficiency and reduce cost of transport of goods.