Ethiopia’s Light Railway Service To Kick Off In Three Months’ Time
On April 3rd, the Ethiopian Railway Cooperation through its Public Relations Officer, Abebech Deriba, made the announcement that the construction of the Addis Ababa railway was near completion. It is expected to be fully operational in three months time. So far, the corporation has imported 33 trains, each having a carrying capacity of 317 passengers, and there are other 7 trains scheduled to arrive in the country later this month.
The contract for the construction of the 34.4 km long light rail network was awarded to Chinese CREC Company. The rail network will have 39 stations on its two lines stretching east to west and north to south of Addis. Another 9 km long test operation railway was officially launched about two months ago by Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn in the company of other dignitaries.
The entire railway project is estimated to bear a price tag of $475 million and is currently 85% complete. The trains are said to have been designed to travel at a top speed of 80 kilometers per how and have a low carbon emission. With a fleet of 41 train buses, the corporation will be able to transport 60 thousand passengers per hour in both directions. The government of Ethiopia has also facilitated the training of 254 Ethiopians in China where they learnt maintenance and inspection of the trains and railway.