Dodoma — The government yesterday tabled a Sh4.8 trillion grand plan to improve infrastructure during the 2016/17 fiscal year, of which Sh700 billion will go towards the purchase of new aircraft and improvement of airports.
This is in accordance with the budget estimates tabled yesterday by the minister for Works, Transportation and Communication, Prof Makame Mbarawa.
The amount, which the minister asked the Parliament to approve as development allocation for his ministry, is equivalent to 46 per cent of the national development budget for next financial year pegged at Sh10.5 trillion.
Prof Mbarawa asked the money for, among other things, the construction and rehabilitation or roads, railways, airports, ports, bridges, ferries, buying of new aircrafts for Air Tanzania Company Limited (ATCL and improvement of institutions under the ministry.
The money will also be used in projects to decongest Dar es Salaam City through building of ring roads as well as a number of flyovers and construction of a new commuter railway in the country's commercial capital.
Prof Mbarawa told the Parliament that Sh500 billion has been set aside in the next financial year for the purchase of new aircraft for the troubled ATCL.
However, the minister could not specify the amount and types of aircraft to be purchased, saying this will be known after a thorough analysis to be conducted later.
Part of the money will also be used to decongest Dar es Salaam City.
Some of projects outlined in the budget speech as part of that plan include construction of several flyovers, ring roads, commuter train as well as second phase of the Dar Rapid Bus transit (Dart).
Expansion of Dar-Chalinze into a six lane expressway and purchase of new ferries including one for Mgogoni in Dar es Salaam, have also been listed among grand plans to improve Tanzania's infrastructure.
Some of other roads which will be constructed through the budget, according to the Minister, are: Usagara-Geita-Kyamyorwa (422km), Kigoma-Kidahwe-Uvinza (491km), Dodoma-Manyoni (127km), Dumila-Kilosa (63km).
Others are Sumbawanga-Matwai-Kasanga (112km), Kyaka-Bugene-Kasumo (170km), Sumbawanga-Mpanda-Nyakanazi (768km), Nzega-Tabora (114km), Masasi-Songea-Mbambabay (623km) and Isaka-Lusahunga (242km).
According to the minister, Sh6.059 billion has been set aside for purchase of new Magogoni and Kigongo ferries as well as spare parts for Temesa workshops. The money will also be used for purchasing a new passenger boat for Kilambo in Namoto as well as Mkongo in Rufiji.
The budget will also be used to lay a 80-pound railway line between Lulanguru and Tabora (61km), Dar es Salaam-Kilosa (283km), Igalula-Tabora and Tabora-Isaka. Some Sh105.16 billion has been set aside for this work.
Plans are also underway to build a railway line between Kaliua and Mpanda and construct a bridge as well as a passenger building and one for cargo storage at Mpanda station at a cost of Sh5.5 billion.
Prof Mbarawa said also that part of the money would continue to rehabilitate parts of railways line which was damaged by floods especially between Gulwe and Kilosa stations.
"We are also going to complete a feasibility study and design of a railway line between Tabora-Kigomam Kaliua-Mpanda, Uvinza- Msongati as well as Mpanda-Kalema and paying compensation for people at Buhongwa top pave the way for the Mpanda-Kalema project to take off.
The budget will also involve facelift works at the Dar es Salaam Port which will involve deepening and rehabilitation of Berths One to Seven, construction of a new Ro-Ro Berth, completion of construction of a one-stop centre, shifting of Kurasini Oil Jetty (KOJ) and construction of a new and modern oil jetty.
In total, some Sh200 billion have been set aside for the ministry for improvement of airports. Work to be done under this category include second phase of major rehabilitation of Kigoma and Tabora airports to consume Sh14.65 billion.
Songwe International Airport will also get a face lift, with plans to fix put up landing lights as well as navigation facilities and Sh30.15 billion will be set aside for expansion of Mwanza Airport.
The government will also use Sh50 billion expand the Kilimanjaro International Airport with Sh2.07 billion assigned for feasibility study for the proposed Msalato Airport in Dodoma.
According to Prof Mbarawa, some Sh92.73 billion will be assigned to development projects in communication sector.
Out of the money, some Sh5 billion will be sourced internally while Sh87.73 billion is expected from foreign sources.