The African Development Bank (AfDB) has approved a substantial loan of $696.41 million (Ksh 106.6 billion) to fund the next phase of the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) project connecting Tanzania and Burundi. This financial injection is set to kickstart the construction of the second phase of this significant cross-border infrastructure project.
This funding is earmarked for the construction of a 651-kilometer stretch of the railway, a critical segment of the broader Joint Tanzania-Burundi-DR Congo SGR Project. “AfDB’s contribution includes a mix of grants and loans, with $98.62 million allocated to Burundi as grants, and $597.79 million to Tanzania in the form of loans and guarantees,” the bank stated.
As a vital component of the Central Corridor transport network, this project not only enhances connectivity between Tanzania and Burundi but also links to Tanzania’s existing railway infrastructure and provides access to the Dar es Salaam port.
Tanzania has made significant progress in the first phase of this project, having already completed 400 kilometers of SGR connecting Dar es Salaam to Dodoma. The continuation of this line from Dodoma to Tabora is currently under construction. The upcoming second phase will extend from Tabora in Tanzania to Musongati in Burundi, featuring a single electrified standard gauge track.
To fully finance the estimated $3.93 billion cost of the entire SGR project, the AfDB is working to mobilize an additional $3.2 billion from various lenders and institutional investors.