Preparations for Mwambani port in top gear

Preparations for implementation of the largest ever 53tri/- Mwambani Economic Corridor Project in Tanga Region, is at an advanced stage and the government is now awaited to give its no objection consent, it was said here.

The Co-director with the company manning the project, Mr Cuthbert Tenga, said everything was in good course and that the government was not required to provide any funds for the implementation of the project, except land where the port and railway infrastructure would be built.

“We have sufficient funds to start the project. Drafting of the agreement that will be later signed by the government for the implementation of the project will be ready within a week,” Mr Tenga said.

He told ‘Daily News’ on the sideline of a one-day workshop organised by the East African Community (EAC) Secretariat where stakeholders were invited to deliberate on the project. T

he project to involve construction of a deep sea and free port at Mwambani Tanga and a new heavy haul standard gauge railway from there, would be operated by MWAPORC, an acronym for Mwambani Port and Railway Corridor, a Tanzanian Project Company.

In terms of compensation of land for people where the port and railways infrastructure would pass through, Mr Tenga said: “The interest of the investors is that they don’t want the government to negotiate the compensation.” According to him, the investors would wish to negotiate themselves and agree with the holders of land and pay the compensation to their satisfaction.

“The worry is that normally the government negotiates lower rates and we don’t think the people will be supportive of our project if they are not satisfied with the compensation,” Mr Tenga claimed. He said that during the workshop, top officials with MWAPORC made presentation on how far they have gone on implementation of the project and they have received supports from the participants.

“We are trying to build this corridor in a way that has not been done here in Tanzania. Looking at putting a corridor with enabling infrastructure like railway, harbour, port which is very big in terms of magnitude, a hub port for that matter, which can carry huge ships available now in the world,” he said.

He said Africa was left in transportation network because there was no hub port where big ships may land and carry goods to wherever destination at a lower cost. Already several international companies from all over the world, in particular from England, Canada, US, Scotland, South Africa and Middle East have expressed commitments to inject funds for its implementation. Some other local giant companies have also shown interests to participate including the National Social Security Fund (NSSF) and the National Housing Corporation (NHC).

By FAUSTINE KAPAMA, Tanzania Daily News

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