by Ronald Ssekandi
KAMPALA Uganda (Xinhua) -- Ugandan
President Yoweri Museveni on Thursday said the country was in
the final stage of negotiations over the construction of the
Standard Gauge Railway (SGR).
In his state of nation
address, Museveni said an agreement would soon be signed once
the protracted negotiations are concluded.
"We have got a good formula and we shall conclude so that we
start building the SGR," he said.
The president did not mention with whom the government is
The SGR links the landlocked country to the Kenyan seaport of
Mombasa. Kenya has completed construction of the SGR linking its
capital Nairobi to Mombasa, with construction to western Kenya
The Nairobi-Mombasa SGR is built by China Road and Bridge
Corporation (CRBC) and financed by China’s Export Import Bank.
Museveni said the SGR would bring down the cost of transport
from 3,456 dollars per 40 feet container by road to 1,800
dollars using the SGR.
TAZARA plans to transport
300,000 tonnes of cargo in fiscal year 2019-2020
DAR ES SALAAM Tanzania (Xinhua) --
The Tanzania-Zambia Railway Authority
(TAZARA) Board of Directors has approved plans to transport
300,000 tonnes of freight in its 2019-2020 financial year, said
a statement released by TAZARA on Sunday.
The statement issued after a meeting of TAZARA Board of
Directors members in the commercial capital Dar es Salaam said
the Board has also approved plans to ferry 800,000 passengers
during the 2019-2020 fiscal year.
The statement said the Board was also resolved to engage more
private operators so that the volume of traffic on TAZARA could
"TAZARA owns a lot of valuable assets that are either lying
idle or are underutilized in most cases," said the statement.
The Board also directed TAZARA management to appoint a
contract manager to specifically manage contracts for the open
access and the rental of locomotives from other railway
operators, said the statement.
The statement added that the Board directed the TAZARA
management to evaluate the possibility of embracing workable
public-private partnership models through which to finance the
re-manufacture of idle locomotives and the development of idle
TAZARA was constructed as a turnkey project between 1970 and
1975 through an interest-free loan from China, with commercial
operations starting in July 1976, covering 1,860 km from Dar es
Salaam in Tanzania to New Kapiri Mposhi in Zambia.
Uganda hopes to increase
coffee production to boost foreign revenue
KAMPALA Uganda (Xinhua) --
Uganda is implementing targeted interventions in
the coffee sector to boost production in the country’s major
foreign exchange earner.
President Yoweri Museveni, while delivering the State of
Nation Address on Thursday in parliament, said the government is
focusing on the distribution of better seedlings and improving
harvesting, post-harvesting and storage methods.
"If we can increase production per hectare of coffee as an
example from the current 0.67 tons to 2.2 tons per hectare like
in Brazil and Vietnam, Uganda would be earning about 2 billion
U.S. dollars from unprocessed coffee alone," Museveni said.
With that production, he said, Uganda will produce 21 million
bags of green coffee per year, and if the coffee was roasted
before export, the country would earn 6.7 billion dollars
If the coffee is processed and transformed into soluble
instant coffee, the earnings would go up to 16.8 billion dollars
Museveni said in the financial year 2017/2018, Uganda earned
492 million dollars from coffee exports.
Six killed in eastern
KAMPALA Uganda (Xinhua) --
Six people have been confirmed dead while nine
others are in hospital after landslides hit the eastern Uganda
district of Bududa, the police said on Wednesday.
David Agaba, District Police Commander, told Xinhua by
telephone that the Tuesday landslides affected three
sub-counties—Buwali, Bukalasi and Bubita.
More than 30 families were affected but we are yet to assess
the situation in Bukalasi, Agaba said.
"The situation on the ground is not good at all. If the rain
continues, we might experience a bigger disaster," the police
He said rescue teams were on the ground doing everything
possible to help the affected residents.
Agaba said the number of fatalities could go up after
assessing the impact in Bukalasi.
Buwali and Bukalasi were last October affected by landslides,
leaving about 38 people dead and hundreds displaced.