Cabinet approves Trans-Zambezi railway extension feasibility study

• By Confidente Reporter

Ministry of Works and Transport (Namibia) says Cabinet has approved the Final Feasibility Study (“FFS” or the “Study”) for the Trans-Zambezi Railway Extension Grootfontein-Rundu-Katima Mulilo.

Minister of Works and Transport Minister, John Mutorwa said Namibia is at the forefront of coordinating the extension of the Grootfontein-Katima Mulilo railway project.

“We are now at the stage where the finance ministry is in the lead to see how we can fund this, because it’s not only a Namibian railway line. It is like a road that will connect us to other countries, such as Zambia and Botswana, through Ngoma up to Kasane, and link up with Zimbabwe and Zambia, where the bridge is, up to the Democratic Republic of Congo,” he said.

Mutorwa said the cross-border rail project aims to link new mines and mining activities to the railway network along the Walvis Bay – Ndola – Lubumbashi Development Corridor to enable transportation of minerals from the Copperbelt to Walvis Bay.

“This corridor is perfectly positioned to service the two-way trade between the SADC region and Europe, North and South America and emerging markets in the East, see Figure 1 for a regional context to this important transport corridor. Namibia Cabinet’s approval is a crucial and big step forward,” he said.

Meanwhile, Tsodilo Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), James Bruchs said the rail extension is an important development for Tsodilo as it opens up a proximate rail transportation system.

It will allow for the delivery of our Xaudum Iron Formation project’s potential iron products, such as iron concentrate, iron pellets, potential direct reduced iron (DRI) products, and Ferrosilicone (FeSi), throughout central, eastern and southern Africa as well as international markets. Rail transportation is complementary to our goal of becoming the supplier of an ultra-high grade +67% Fe product to the industry and doing what we can to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) by becoming part of the “green steel” movement,” Bruchs.

The proposed rail extension between Grootfontein and Katima Mulilo is significant as the extension is planned to pass through Divundu in Namibia which is located 35 kilometers (22 miles) from our license location in Northern Botswana.

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