By: Isaac Thuku @MountKenyaTimes
A railway line linking the standard gauge railway and the meter gauge railway in Naivasha will be complete in a month time.
Once linked, it will see the transportation of cargo from Mombasa to Naivasha done through the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR), and later through the meter-gauge rail from Naivasha to Malaba.
East African Community Principal Secretary Dr. Kevin Desai says after completion of the link, the government plans to introduce 24-hour service at the Inland Container Depot in Mai Mahiu.
“By making the Port and the ICD in Naivasha operational for 24 hours, we shall make them competitive in the region,” he said.
Desai who visited the ICD in Mai Mahiu that has been operational since last year said the government was keen on a seamless transfer of cargo from Mombasa to Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi.
“The EAC is working on a seamless interconnectivity and this will be achieved in a month when works on the meter-gauge railway line are complete,” said Desai.
The PS said the railway is the way to go when ferrying bulky cargo, noting that it was cheaper and faster compared to the road transport that has been in use for years.
“By collecting goods from the ICD, traders from the neighbouring countries will have reduced the distance covered by trailers by over 400kms,” he said.
According to the PS, so far the Inland Container Depot in Mai Mahiu has processed over 11,000 containers, of which 36 percent are destined to neighboring countries.
The government has also earmarked funds to fully supply the industrial park with water and this is now a reality as the contractor enters the last phase.