Mwaporc’s $75 Billion Corridor to Improve Service Delivery

Published on 15th October 2013

With observers forecasting East Africa’s growth by an average of 6% per annum in the coming years partly due to recent discoveries of oil in Uganda, the implementation of the Common market protocol makes the region’s future bright. A new project is set to enable the eastern and central Africa countries to take advantage of the free movement of labor and capital, hence improving the supply chain of goods and commodities.

Supply chain management has gained importance in the past 25 years and is now a vital part of overall industry and trade development. Mwambani Port and Rail-way Corridor (MWAPORC CO. Ltd) is a Tanzania based company that has de-signed an efficient and cost effective supply chain corridor codenamed “Mwam-bani Economic Corridor” (MEC). This project will comprise of the development of a deep sea port at Kigombe, Tanga region of Tanzania that shall have the capaci-ty and depth to handle 8th generation 400meter long ships; and the construction of an airport city in Pangani-Tanga to complement the deep sea port by provid-ing a logistics and manufacturing platform for regional and international firms. The center of the project will be an 8,500 km standard gauge Trans-continental railway that shall link the new port at Kigombe on the Indian Ocean in Tanga, to the Banana Port on the Atlantic Ocean in DRC. It shall traverse Tanzania, Burun-di, DRC, with link lines to Uganda and Southern Sudan. Furthermore, the project will include the construction of railway towns in the form of special economic zones at intervals of between 400-500 km along the railway. These will serve as anchors of regional social-economic development and in addition, the corridor shall comprise: broadband fiber optic cables, water, gas and petroleum pipe-lines.

The development of the project is driven by the everlasting demand for lower transport and logistics costs accompanied by the need for more infrastructure and better quality of logistics services. With its Mombasa Port presently making Kenya the major transport hub in the East African region, Tanzania stands to be the hub of rapid economic activity that will increase intra-African regional trade volumes and international trade from the high capacity ports, cross boarder rail-ways and logistics corridor aligned to the key hinterland markets it consists of.

Mott McDonald Ltd., a company registered in England and Wales, signed on to be MWAPORC Company’s engineering consultants for the MEC project after hav-ing been engaged in October 2012 in undertaking the scoping study for the MEC concept. Mott McDonald is a private UK based engineering and development consultancy firm who were development consultants in the construction of the 100 km Kabale to Kisoro Northern Corridor in Uganda and the Mbomela Stadium for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. The firm is currently working on the £25 Million SARRAH Health Program in South Africa that supports initiatives to strengthen the country’s response to HIV and health. Mott McDonald Ltd, who won the CIBSE Building Performance Award this year have estimated the con-struction costs for the Mwambani Economic Corridor project at US$75 Billion.

Brookwood Capital Corporation, a privately held investment bank and equity firm that specializes in transactions and investments in Africa, the Middle East and Asia will be the firm on board in the development of the Mwambani Economic Corridor as financial consultants. The company’s Deputy Chairman and group CEO, Mr. David J. Bate, recently confirmed interest from a major export development agency that will inject US$500 Million through an export credit fa-cility to support early stage development of the MEC project by MWAPORC Co. Ltd.

President Jakaya Kikwete of Tanzania recently met a delegation of MWAPORC along with their engineers from Mott McDonald and assured them complete support. MWAPORC Director, Mr. Beenunula Eyenunula Nunumisa, told the President that their company shall offer African investors the opportunity to buy shares and bonds in the project.

The groundbreaking ceremony for the multi-billion dollar corridor shall begin at the Kigombe Hub Port 18 months from November 2013. The MEC project is pro-jected to be complete by 2021. The project will do a lot to address the complexi-ties and issues surrounding regional transportation logistics and help form a plat-form for regional economic growth.

By Emmanuel Kirenzi

The author is a Marketing Major student at the Kampala International University in Dar es Salaam Tanzania.

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