The delivery of the first shipment of manganese mined in the Democratic Republic of Congo carried along the Benguela Railroad to the port of Lobito provided tax revenue of 22,000 kwanzas (US$103), said the regional director of Angola’s 7th Tax Region.
Inácio Morango also told the Angop news agency that the decision to apply reduced customs duties was intended to make the railway line profitable to pay for the large investments made by the government in the reconstruction of the Benguela railroad.
The line was completely rebuilt by the China Railway Group 20 Co (CR20) group under a Chinese public works project, from the design of the project to the physical construction of the line and 67 stations, as well as the supply of rolling stock, as part of a total investment of US$1.83 billion.
The resumption of operations on the railway line will allow the transport of goods exported by landlocked countries, such as Zambia and the Democratic Republic of Congo, by providing economic benefits to the population of the region, Morango said.
The inaugural international train between DR Congo and Angola arrived on Monday at the railway station in the border town of Luau, Moxico province, carrying 50 containers with 1,000 tons of manganese from the Kasange mines to the port of Lobito, from where it will be exported.
The shipment of ore from the Democratic Republic of Congo, which will be the first for over 30 years, takes place at a time when the CFB branch line is already in place, as far as the cross-border railway bridge over the Luau River.
The border municipality of Luau, in Angola’s Moxico province, is the gateway and location of the first station of the CFB in eastern Angola, whose final destination is Lobito, in Benguela province. The route is 1,344 kilometres long and it is possible to reach the cities of Beira (Mozambique) and Dar-es-Salam (Tanzania) via Zambia’s railway lines. (macauhub)