Mozambican government threatens to cancel concession contract of Beira railroad company

2 February 2011

Maputo, Mozambique, 2 Feb – The Mozambican government has said it will cancel the concession contract with Beira railroad company, Companhia dos Caminhos de Ferro da Beira (CCFB) if by 24 March work to rebuild the Sena railroad is not concluded, Mozambican state newspaper Notícias reported.

If the contract is cancelled, management of the railroad will be handed over to state rail and port management company Portos e Caminhos de Ferro de Moçambique (CFM), whose chairman, Rosário Mualeia, gave assurances in Maputo that reconstruction of the Sena railroad would be finished on time to transport the first shipment of coal mined at Moatize, starting in the second half of this year.

Mualeia also denied previous information citing the director general of CCFB as saying that reconstruction of the Sena railroad had been concluded last Monday.

According to the chairman of CFM, the quality contracted for the Sena railroad has basic fundamental requirements that have to be observed before the work can be considered to be ready for commercial train operation.

Along the Dondo-Inhaminga section of the railroad, Mualeia said, defects and omissions had been detected that needed to be corrected, and the request for final inspection of the Mutarara-Moatize section has yet to be made, as outlined in the contract, and in some areas drainage ditches have not been built and some stations have yet to be concluded.

Considering the overall delay of around 15 months, Mualeia said that it was unlikely that CCFB would be able to finish the work that needed to be done in the 60 days given by the government and thus it was inevitable that the concession contract would be cancelled and management of the system handed over to CFM.

The concession on the Beira Railroad System, which includes the Sena and Machipanda lines, was granted in 2004 to Companhia Caminhos de Ferro da Beira (CCFB), a consortium made up of Indian state companies RITES and IRCON and Mozambique’s Portos e Caminhos e Ferro de Moçambique (CFM), for a renewable period of 25 years. (macauhub)