ZAMBIA Railways Limited Chief executive officer Christopher Musonda says the railway firm has concluded an agreement with the Tanzania Zambia Railway Authority (TAZARA) which will see the two companies running their trains on each other’s network.
Mr Musonda said in an interview recently that the agreement has the blessings of both the Zambian and Tanzanian governments at presidential level.
“We have concluded the agreement with TAZARA at the level of head of state where we have been allowed as Zambia Railways to run a train into Dar es salaam and TAZARA can also run their train into Lusaka or Kitwe,” he said.
Mr Musonda said the agreement will help both firms deliver goods and services to clients even in areas where their respective railway lines do not reach.
He said the two companies are currently working on operationalising the agreement to enable it take effect by the end of July this year.
“We will start running trains to Chozi and then come back. We need some technical adjustments for us to be able to go to Dar es salaam. As you may know, the hills are very steep in Tanzania as you approach Iringa and Mbeya,” he said.
Mr Musonda said the importance of rail transport to the economy cannot be overemphasised because its strength lies in bulk haulage.
He said an efficient railway system can help smoothen the logistics chain for land-linked countries such as Zambia by ensuring a huge amount of goods reach the port in good time.