US companies interested in supplying trains to Angola’s Benguela Railroad

31 July 2006

Lobito/Benguela, Angola, 31 July – US railroad transport companies are interested in supplying trains to the Benguela Railroad (CFB) in Angola, the US ambassador to Angola, Cynthia Efird said Friday in Lobito.

Efird made the announcement during a meeting with the CFB board of directors. She said that her government and US business owners were interested in being part of renewed activity of the Benguela Railroad.

According to Efird, helping the CFB top a rapid recovery was a way of ensuring conditions for the development of southern African economies, as the Benguela corridor would make it easier to transport goods in the region.

CFB’s managing director, Carlos Brás said that his board was open to finding partners that made the refurbishment of broken down trains easier, as well as the supply of new ones.

Brás added that his company’s lack of financial resources had made it difficult to acquire modern equipment.

he pointed out the current trains were all US-manufactured and that any partnership with US railroad transport companies would make it easier to reinstate the equipment.

In the 1970s and 80s, the CFB had 34 trains, but due to the Angolan civil war, currently only 8 of those work on a regular basis. This si also the case with the carriages which were either destroyed in the war or through use over time.

Efird is currently spending a few days in Benguela and is due to travel to Cubal, 171 kilometers form the provincial capital, on Monday. (macauhub)