Ethiopia's New Transport Hope

Without a shadow of doubt, transport plays a major role in smoothing the progress of a given country for the most part in bolstering the economy of a given country and changing the lives of millions.

In reality,the growing economy of our country necessitates high transport infrastructure seeing that achieving the intended target would be easier said than done. Furthermore, the railway transport helps in catalyzing the country's trade flow, connecting development corridors and bringing into play alternative ports for the socio-economic development of the country. It as well plays a major role in taking the country to new heights of success.

Before coming into being, the Ethiopian Railway Corporation was successfully able to make railway line selection. After the corporation had identified the requirements of technical activities, financial capacities and other related aspects, it set a plan to construct eight railway train lines (corridors). By the same token, here and abroad, , project management inclusive,the corporation had trained a range of manpower in different train engineering fields: civil , electrical and mechanical with certificates, degrees and masters with in the time interval which lasted from six months to three years.

Beyond any doubt, the expansion of the railway lines make certain the development corridor strategies of the country, confirm division of product and what have you. Though the project is run by contractors, the number of consultants as well as engineers taking part in the profession is increasing . This in turn helps build self-confidence and minimize building cost.


Addis Ababa-Sebeta-Measo-Dewele project

Among the different railway line projects which have been planned to be expanded throughout the country is Addis Ababa-Sebeta-Measo-Dewele project. The project which has been built at a cost of 3.4 Billion American Dollars is going to get its trial program underway . The rail line which stretches from Addis Ababa/Sebeta up to Dewele Port is 656 K.M long. Furthermore, the port which stretches from Dewele to Djibouti covers 100 Kms. All in all, the project covers 756 KM.

By the same token, the railway line which stretches from Addis Ababa to Adama covers 107 Kms. It is a double track rail while the rest is a single track rail. The width of the rail is 1.435 meter standard gauge. The speed of passengers train is 120 km/ per hour while the speed of freight rail travel 80 km per/hour. In this project, there are more than 16 train stations, among others, Sebeta, Lebu, Metehara, Awash, Measo, Bike, Dire Dawa, Merewa, Adigala, Ayisha and Dewelle.

The project has been built in two phases and sixteen subsections. The first phase which stretched from Sebeta to Measo is built by China Railway Group Limited (CREC). What is more, the second phase which stretches from Measo to Dewelle is constructed by a contractor known as Civil Engineering Construction Corporation. More to the point, China International Engineering Consulting Cooperation (CIECC) played a part as a consultant in both phases.

The train which has the capacity of carrying 2760 passengers travels 120 km/per hour. What is more, the train which has the capacity of carrying 3500 tons of gadget travel at a speed of 80 KM Speed per/hour. It takes ten hours to arrive in Djibouti from Addis Ababa.

The production of sleepers, partner bridges and other inputs have allowed the country to curtail foreign currency apart from facilitating the transfer of knowledge.


Awash-Kombolcha-Woldiya/Hara Market Project

The Awash-Kombolcha-Woldiya/Hara Market railway train line Project is 392 KM long. It runs fully by electricity with 1.435 meter standard gauge width. The train line is being constructed at a cost of 1.7 billion American dollars.

The railway line, which stretches from the Eastern part of Ethiopia to the West, has the capacity of reducing the time by 50% compared to the previous one and plays a great role in the economic development of the country. They produce carbon free air-conditions which contribute to the growth of the country seeing that the trains are run by electricity. The project will have ten Railway stations. The general supervising center is being constructed in Kombolcha. There are around 12 caves in this project area which cover all in all 10 Kilometers. Among them the longest cave is 2.02 KM long which is found in Habru Wereda.


Weldia/Hara Market/ Mekelle project

The project interconnects states positioned in the northern parts of the country. It starts from Mekelle and then cross the Afar state and Hara market found in the northern Amhara state. After that, it crosses Awash-Kombolcha and at the end of the day it meets with the railway lines which come from the eastern part.

It starts from Weldia/Hara Market/ and peirces through Robit, Kobo, Wajja, Alamata, kukufto, Mehenni, Adi-Abder, Mesha, Dadahi and Adi Gudem making Mekelle- its final destination. The railway project is 216 km long with a single track having a width of 1.435 meter standard gauge apart from running by electric power. The cost of the railway line construction is 1,579367, 000.00/1.6 (One billion 579 million three hundred sixty-seven thousand Birr USD.)

Being with contractors and consultants, the educated task force, who attended school abroad in rail engineering through the Ethiopian railway corporation, have been working to make the dream of the expansion of train infrastructure and technology transfer across the country become a reality. As design and building is mostly carried out by contractors, the corporation is doing a number of workshops revolving around design given that it plays a major role in knowledge transfer in the sector. While we are on the subject, the railway line under discussion possesses four train stations. There are as well eight caves which cover 10 Km distances. Among them the longest cave, Maychalefew, is 3.66 KM long.

When the train line becomes operational, it will catalyze the journey to Djibouti port without a shadow of doubt, apart from strengthening the import-export of the country. Moreover, the project plays a major role in establishing common political economy with different states of the country in addition to curtailing foreign incomes.

The construction is carried out by the Chinese Communication and Construction Company (CCCC) while counseling and supervision done by a Chinese company named CIECC vs. BES along with domestic companies. The construction got in in motion in october 04/ 2007 EC. It is expected to see the day's light in June 2011 Ethiopian calendar.

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