TUNISIA - The development of the railway line project that will link Rwanda, Burundi and Tanzania as part of the Central Development corridor will cost an estimated $3.5 bn.
This was revealed at the meeting on the multi national project which concluded Tuesday in Tunisia bringing together 65 representatives from the three countries.
Rwanda was represented at the roundtable meeting that also attracted potential investors for the project, by Infrastructure Minister Linda Bihire and officials from the transport sector.
The roundtable which was convened by the African Development Bank (AfDB), aimed at sharing findings of the feasibility study of the project with various stakeholders interested in its development and implementation with a view to harnessing their opinion and advice on the way forward.
The line which will eventually reduce the cost of imported merchandise is set to start from Isaka in Tanzania via Rusumo Boarder.
It is also to proceed to Bugesera District from where it will turn to Kigali at Nyandungu which is to be the main stage for loading and assembling wagons.
Later this year Burundi and Rwanda are expected to start works on a 691 km (430 mile) railway line connecting both countries to Tanzania.
The proposal of the route is based on the financial and other studies carried out by DB International, a German railway consulting company.
Economic analysts say that the railway will lower the cost of transporting merchandise from 40 percent (of total costs) to five percent.
It will accommodate both electric and locomotive trains as the Dar-es-salaam to Isaka will be upgraded to meet all requirements.