Uganda expects to commence cons construction of the standard gauge railway from Malaba to Kampala beginning 2023/24 financial year.
This emerged during a meeting of the Cluster of Standard Gauge Railway Development ministerial meeting bringing together transport and infrastructure ministers from Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and South Sudan.
The meeting chaired by Uganda Minister for Works and Transport Katumba Wamala sought a review on the status of the implementation of the directives from the 14th Northern Corridor Integration Projects (NCIPs) Summit held in Nairobi in June 2018.
With Democratic Republic of Congo being the latest member of the East African Community (EAC), the minister agreed to further invite the nation to be part the SGR Cluster under NCIPs.
“For the Kampala-Kigali section, Tororo-Gulu-Nimule sections, the feasibility studies were completed, while the studies are ongoing on the Nimule-Juba section,” read a statement by Wamala.
The region targets to construct the SGR in order to facilitate the economic development of the region by reducing the cost of transport which will in turn contribute to the reduction in the cost of doing business, making the region more competitive.
The new line is further expected to provide a seamless rail link between NCIPs member countries and enhance regional intra-trade.
Kenya which has been operating SGR since June 2017 has seen the line carry 6.1 million tones of cargo as revenue from cargo and passenger services rose to Ksh Ksh 15.3 billion.
The meeting held in Kampala Uganda on Thursday was attended by Kenya’s Road and Transport Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen, Rwanda Infrastructure Minister Dr Enest Nsabimana, South Sudan Roads and Bridges Minister Simon Mijak Mijok.