The government said the recapitalisation of the National Railways of Zimbabwe (NRZ) is key to the country’s economic growth.
The Minister of State for Presidential Affairs, Responsible for Monitoring, Implementation of Government Programmes, Joram Gumbo, said the resuscitation of NRZ will also prevent damage to the road infrastructure as more goods would be transported by rail.
Speaking during a tour of the NRZ workshops on Thursday, Gumbo also said ZWL$2 billion had been pledged to fund the refurbishing of NRZ infrastructure. Said Gumbo:
NRZ is a vital link to economic development, more so for a land-locked country like ours. It is therefore important to ensure the company is recapitalised.
The government continues to support your efforts to re-equip and recapitalize the organization in order to give you a competitive advantage.
In this regard, ZWL$2 billion has been pledged to fund the refurbishment and reestablishment of NRZ infrastructure.
I have been informed that the target for this year is to refurbish four main lines, five shunting locomotives and 940 wagons.
I urge you to apply yourselves fully to this project given the fact that for the entity to operate optimally… 170 coaches are required.
Gumbo said the increase in vehicular traffic on the country’s roads has brought with it many challenges. He said:
The volume of trucks on our roads has increased exponentially over the years and has brought with it many challenges the rapid increase in road freight is a cause for concern because of the damage on our roads.
Congestion and the rise in accidents, these problems are partly due to the goods that are being transported by roads instead of rail.
It is our hope that upon completion your project should assist in relieving pressure on our road network.