The New Times (Kigali)

19 April 2014

Rwanda, TZ for Joint Rail Project

Tanzania, Rwanda and Burundi are looking for an adviser to help them secure financing for a $4.13b joint railway project aimed at boosting cross-border trade in the region.

The railway will link Dar es Salaam with the capital cities of landlocked Rwanda and Burundi.

The Tanzanian transport ministry said the adviser would be required to assist the three governments in structuring the joint infrastructure deal, including investment options, marketing and providing investment risk advice.

The deadline for the submission of bids is August 21.

"We have jointly done all the preliminary studies. With the completion of the detailed study recently, we are now on the procurement of a transaction advisor," the Tanzanian president Jakaya Kikwete said in a speech.

Tanzania plans to invest in new transport links to become a regional transport hub, Kikwete said recently.

Commenting on the development, Rwanda's Minister for Infrastructure Silas Lwakabamba said the country is participating in the project to ensure its exports are transported to sea ports with ease and at affordable rates.

Countries in the East African region are racing to build new roads, railways and power plants to make up for decades of severe under-investment.

In November last year, Kenya broke ground for the construction of a new rail line linking its proposed second port at Lamu with Uganda, Rwanda and other neighbouring states.

Tanzania and Kenya both have long coastlines and the planned investments are aimed at serving growing economies in the land-locked heart of Africa from Uganda to Malawi.

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