China Back as Kenya-Uganda SGR Financier

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The Kenya-Uganda SGR project has managed to secure itself a commitment from Exim Bank of China that will enable the funding of the standard gauge railway that runs from Naivasha in Kenya to the border of Uganda as China recommits once again as the Kenya-Uganda SGR Financier. The remaining stretch from Naivasha-Kisumu-Malaba line is estimated to cost approximately USD 5.3 billion.

As revealed by Kipchumba Murkomen, Kenya’s Cabinet Secretary of Roads and Transport, revealed that the Pan-African lender African Development Bank (AfDB) and Kenya’s Railway Development Fund would also cash in this project as a way of implementing the Chinese side as both Nairobi and Kampala keep attracting more investors for this SGR project.

Murkomen told The East African as President William Ruto hosted just recently his Ugandan counterpart, Yoweri Museveni, at State House in Nairobi where both leaders expressed their commitment on implementing this joint project which is also expected to extend all the way to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

This railway line will provide the needed regional competitive advantage to improve the overall regional connectivity with connections to the countries of Uganda, South Sudan, Rwanda, and also DRC.


Tanzania SGR Competes the SGR Extension Project to DRC

Currently, there is pressure on both Kenya and Uganda to extend the SGR to the Great Lakes Region, more so the mineral-rich DRC, as the neighboring Tanzania pushes on with its electrified SGR which is also headed in the same direction on the Central Corridor. The $7.6 billion Tanzania SGR project spans a total distance of 1,600 kilometers from the port city of Dar es Salaam to Mwanza which is located on the shores of Lake Victoria and Kigoma which is located along Lake Tanganyika. The country’s SGR is being constructed in 5 phases by contractors from both Turkey and China. As for the 300-km Dar-Morogoro SGR stretch, the completion status is currently at 98%. Likewise the 442km Morogoro-Makutopra Railway line completion status stands at 96%. The Makutopora-Tabora stretch is currently at 14%, Tabora-Isaka is at 5% and lastly the Mwanza-Isaka stands at 54%.

Additionally, Dodoma received its first batch of electric locomotives in the month of April that will be running on the country’s SGR. These locomotives were gotten from Hyundai Rotem in South Korea and have the capacity of carrying up to 589 passengers and can move at an average speed of 160km/h.

Beijing Back as Kenya-Uganda SGR Financier

The announcement of Beijing returning as the financier of the project has accorded fresh impetus to Kenya and Uganda as they embark on searching for commercial lenders. According to Murkomen, the funding discussions were currently underway after all the transport ministers of the East African Commission committed to enabling the implementation of the project. He mentioned that DRC, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, and also Uganda all signed a joint agreement this month for the development of this project.

As revealed by Fred Byamukama who is the Minister for Transport in Uganda, who represented Uganda’s Works and Transport Minister Katumba Wamala, who holds the position of chairperson of Joint Ministerial Committee on this SGR project, stated that they had reached an agreement on sourcing funds jointly simply because this railway run project does not stop in only one country in the region. He also pointed out that the joint sourcing of funds and using the same contractors on constructing the SGR will enable work to go on smoothly.

“We have obliged our respective Ministers to take joint urgent measures to mobilise resources for the implementation of this regional shared infrastructure and report on progress by the end of 2024,” Dr William Ruto said.

Also read: $696.41 Million Approved by African Development Bank (AfDB) for the Development of Phase 2 of Tanzania-Burundi-DRC SGR

Tanzania SGR Inaugural Tests Launched

Kenya-Uganda SGR Commercial Contract Signed Amid Extension Plans

$1 Billion Chinese Tazara Revamp Proposal Issued