Rwanda seeks $1.3bn to finance standard gauge railway linking Tanzania

Wednesday May 22 2019


KIGALI. Rwanda is looking for $1.3 billion to fund the construction of the proposed Isaka-Kigali standard gauge railway that links Rwanda and Tanzania, a senior Rwandan official said Tuesday.

The figure is higher than $1.2 billion revealed during the launch of the 400 km railway line on January 20, 2018 in Dar es Salaam.

 "The study for Isaka-Kigali SGR is completed," said Jean de Dieu Uwihanganye, Minister of State in charge of Transport, while speaking at a local radio station talk show.  "Rwanda is looking for a staggering around $1.3 billion to finance its portion with the aim of reducing logistics costs, boosting trade and easing the movement of people between Tanzania and Rwanda."

Investing in transport projects is among the Rwandan government's top priorities as a way to attract investment in productive sectors, improve business environment and increase jobs opportunities, he said. Initial studies had shown that the project that will connect landlocked Rwanda to the Dar es Salaam port was estimated to cost $2.5 billion.

In the Isaka-Kigali project Tanzania is expected to fund the 371 kilometre section from Isaka to Rusumo at the tune of $1.3 billion. Rwanda's $1.3 billion will fund the Rusumo-Kigali's 150 kilometres.

Tanzania plans to spend $14.2bn over the next five years to build the 2,561 kilometre-SGR connecting its main port of Dar es Salaam to land-locked neighbors including the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda and Uganda. (Xinhua)