Tanzania Prepares to Allow Private Operators
Tanzania is preparing regulations to allow private operators in its state-run railway infrastructure as the government seeks to create a competitive environment in the transport sector.
Dr Michael Kisaka, the director of railways regulations at the Surface and Marine Transport Regulatory Authority (Sumatra), says the government is drafting the rules known as Open Access Regulations to allow more operators in the available railway infrastructure.
Tanzania has two operators: Tanzania-Zambia Railway Authority (Tazara) that is owned and runs between the two countries and Tanzania Railway Limited (TRL) which operates between Dar es Salaam and the western regions of Kigoma, Katavi and Mwanza.
The Tazara line which was financed by China between 1970 and 1975, is 1,860km long and links the port of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania and New Kapiri Mposhi in Zambia.
The rest of the railway lines are owned by Reli Assets Holding Company (Rahco), a state-owned company responsible for developing, managing and maintaining Tanzania railway infrastructure.
Rahco also owns Tanga line and Moshi – Arusha line.
“The regulations will create an environment where private operators or investors will be allowed to provide services after signing agreements with the infrastructure manager. This will bring in competition in the railway transport and make it more vibrant,” said Dr Kisaka on the sidelines of the second annual Africa Port and Rail Expansion Summit, last week.
He said the regulations are now in the drafting stage and may be ready by the end of the next financial year.