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Rift Valley Railways gains support to open new markets in East Africa

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Qalaa Holdings, an African leader in infrastructure and industry, successfully convened a one day conference, “Rift Valley Railways: An Integrated Logistics Solution in East Africa,” that has laid the groundwork to stimulate improvement in bilateral trade between Egypt and the countries of East Africa. It highlighted the use of rail as the most efficient, cost-effective and environmentally friendly mode of transporting goods in East Africa and introduced Rift Valley Railways as a suitable provider to help local exporters from Egypt, Kenya, Uganda and South Sudan tap into new markets and grow the volume of inter-regional trade.

“RVR is currently at the midpoint of a US$ 287 million capital investment and turnaround programme that began in January 2012 to revitalise the railway,” said Karim Sadek, Qalaa Holdings Managing Director. “Since the start of the renewal programme, we have invested US$ 126 million in modern rail operating technology, rebuilding infrastructure, expanding haulage capacity and developing modern rail operating skills in RVR’s 2000 strong workforce. Today we are seeing improved safety and reliability, increased capacity and a significant improvement in the overall efficiency of the operation.”

Sadek also announced that RVR has recently purchased 500 flat wagons from CNR, the largest producer of rolling stock in China, the first batch (120 wagons) of which is due to arrive at the end of September. “These new heavy-duty wagons are a real game-changer for us. It means that we can carry much heavier goods, increase security and become more efficient in loading and offloading, all of which will make a positive contribution to your bottom line and ours,” said Heinel. “Making use of rail is commercially advantageous for us all. This is the first of many engagements that we want to have with Egypt. We see huge potential, and while there are still challenges, we believe that we are on the right track.”

RVR is Qalaa Holdings’ primary investment in the African transportation sector, with a 25-year concession to operate 2352 km of track linking the Indian Ocean Port of Mombasa to the interiors of Kenya, the Ugandan capital Kampala and the northern part of Uganda.

Adapted from press release by

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