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Kenya launches Chinese-built fast train

China Daily Africa | Updated: 2017-05-28 08:23

The eagerly awaited inauguration of Kenya's modern railway infrastructure is set for May 31. The $3.8 billion Standard Gauge Railway, developed by China Road and Bridge Corp, has been completed six months ahead of schedule. It is expected to lower the cost of doing business in East Africa as it enables the transportation of freight from the port of Mombasa to Nairobi, with later connections to neighboring Uganda and Rwanda.

Here is a chronology of the milestones of the 472 km Nairobi-Mombasa route:

Phase I

Aug 12, 2009: CRBC signed MoU with Kenya Railways Corp.

2012: Submitted the preliminary design. Civil works contract and supply and installation of facilities, locomotives and rolling stock contracts signed.

Aug 19, 2013: President Xi Jinping and President Uhuru Kenyatta jointly witnessed the signing of the MoU on financing the Mombasa-Nairobi SGR Project.

May 11, 2014: Premier Li Keqiang witnessed the signing of the financing agreement with heads of state from East African countries.

Phase II

Dec 12, 2014: Project construction officially commenced.

Jan 23, 2015: Kenyatta visited the standard gauge railway observation segment of Section 3, and track-laying base of Section 6.

May 26, 2015 : Kenyatta visited the construction site of the Tsavo River Super Bridge.

Sept 19, 2015: Kenyatta and China Communications Construction Co President Chen Fenjian jointly attended the ground-breaking ceremony of the Nairobi Terminus.

Oct 30, 2015: Track-laying work commenced and operation planning and locomotive purchase started.

March 26, 2016: Zhang Dejiang, chairman of the Standing Committee of National People's Congress, went to Mombasa to see the Mombasa Terminus of Mombasa-Nairobi SGR Project.

Aug 10, 2016: Kenyatta met with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi in Nairobi, showing willingness to actively promote the early completion and operation of the project and jointly build the East Africa Railway Network.

Late December 2016: The first locomotives were shipped.

Phase III

Beginning of 2017: Integration test and commission started.

June 1, 2017: Trial operation of SGR Project.

January 2018: Officially opened to traffic.

 Kenya launches Chinese-built fast train

Thousands of young men and women have had the chance to be part of the team behind the success of the Standard Gauge Railway Project.




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