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The Chinese contractor had been working on rehabilitation of the 1 344 km line from Luau on the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo to Lobito since January 2006.
The 1 067 mm gauge line was largely complete by 2014, but through traffic from DR Congo had to await reconstruction of the connecting 422 km Dilolo – Kolwezi line, which was finished in 2016.
An initial shipment of manganese ore from mines at Kisange in the DRC was carried over the Benguela Railway in March 2018, followed by a 1 200 tonne shipment of copper in September that year. In July this year a Rovos Rail cruise train arrived at Lobito from Dar es Salaam in Tanzania after a two-week journey.
In the last five years the Chinese contractor has been finishing off work on station buildings and platforms, bridges, culverts and telecommunications, as well as carrying out staff training and familiarisation.
This article first appeared on www.railwaygazette.com
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