Construction of the Mega Trans-Kalahari Railway Project Expected to Speed up as Botswana Calls for Faster Progress

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The construction of the mega Trans-Kalahari railway project is expected to speed up as Botswana calls for faster progress. Botswana’s President Mokgweetsi Eric Masisi noted that he seeks to see faster progress in constructing the Trans-Kalahari Railway project. Once completed, the railway project is expected to be a transportation link between Namibia and Botswana. The president noted that the project has been on the cards for more than a decade and should have been completed by now, benefiting both countries and the region.

“I feel compelled to highlight that this project should not be starting but in its final stages by now. It is imperative that we quickly address all pending matters to expedite the commencement of the project without delay,” Masisi said. He added that time is of the essence, and urgent action is required to resolve any outstanding issues so that the project can begin as soon as possible.

The Significance of the Mega Trans-Kalahari Railway Project Once Completed

The construction of the mega Trans-Kalahari railway project is expected to revolutionize Southern Africa’s transport sector once completed. The project will benefit not only Botswana and Namibia but also other Southern African countries such as Angola and South Africa. Botswana’s government, aware of this, seeks the expeditious completion of the much-stalled project. He made the remarks during talks with his Namibian counterpart, Nangolo Mbumba, in the Namibian coastal city of Swakopmund, where he is being hosted on a three-day official visit. The Trans-Kalahari railway is expected to improve the transport sector of both nations. Furthermore, the governments of Namibia and Botswana are committed to improving freight rail services. This is expected to be done in a way that will best meet the transportation needs of the users. Moreover, the project will create jobs and economic benefits for their citizens.Privately funded Trans-Kalahari RAILWAY project gathers pace

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US$ 9.5bn Trans-Kalahari railway project yet to kick off, a decade since inception

The State of Affairs Regarding the Railway Project

The Trans-Kalahari railway project involves the construction of a new line from Botswana to Walvis Bay in Namibia. In addition, it involves a complete rehabilitation of the TransNamib line. The rehabilitation works will be carried out from Gobabis, through the capital, Windhoek, to the new port at Walvis Bay. The 1,500km railway line will traverse the vast semi-arid, sandy savannah of the Kalahari Desert, hence the name “Trans-Kalahari railway.” It mirrors the existing Trans-Kalahari Highway or corridor that links Botswana to Walvis Bay. However, unlike the railway line, the corridor stretches 1,900km. It traverses Walvis Bay through Windhoek, Gaborone in Botswana, and Johannesburg to Pretoria in South Africa. The project will be developed through a public-private partnership based on a DBOOT contractual arrangement. Under this arrangement, a developer undertakes the project’s financing, design, construction, operation, and maintenance. The project’s consulting engineers are Nine squared consultants.Privately funded Trans-Kalahari RAILWAY project gathers pace

Other Significant Transportation Projects Ongoing in Southern Africa

Apart from the mega Trans-Kalahari Railway Project, other significant projects are underway in the region. One of them is the Trans-Angolan motorway project. The project entails a 1,400 km-long project that will link the north and south of the country. Angola’s minister of public works, Carlos dos Santos, noted that the company, a subsidiary of China Communications, has signed a memorandum of understanding. The memorandum between the Angolan government and China Roads and Bridges (CRBC) ensures progress on ongoing feasibility studies. The minister noted that the feasibility studies should be finalized in the second or third quarter of 2025. He also noted that construction would follow shortly afterward, either in the same year or early 2026.

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Resumption of the Trans-Kalahari Railway (TKR) line expansion Between Botswana and Namibia

China-based Company Awarded a Multi-Billion Deal for the Construction of the 1,400-km Angola’s First Motorway