A Chinese company is preparing to build standard-gauge line to connect four East African capitals, Bloomberg reports.
The first phase of a railway will cost $2.3 billion, with Chinese contractors expected to begin construction this year.
China Harbour Engineering Co. is preparing to start building the 273-kilometer (170-mile) standard-gauge section linking Uganda’s capital, Kampala, and the Kenyan border. It will take 40 months to complete. Uganda is borrowing money from the Export-Import Bank of China for the project.
Uganda, which plans to start producing oil by about 2020, is seeking to build a combined 1,724 kilometers of standard-gauge railway as part of a regional project eventually connecting the capitals of Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and South Sudan. The entire regional network will span about 3,200 kilometers.
“As soon as studies are complete and approved, and funds secured, works on the other sections of the SGR will commence,” project coordinator Kasingye Kyamugambi said.