Coal mined in Mozambique unable to be transported due to damage on railway line

18 February 2013

The Sena railway, which transports coal mined in Mozambique’s Tete province to the port of Beira, has been at a standstill since last week due to damage caused by flooding, according to the Mozambican press.

The situation is making officials at the subsidiaries of Brazilian company Vale and Anglo-Australian group Rio Tinto operating in the province “nervous” and as well as the rain there was a derailment last Tuesday.

Losses resulting from accidents, from three derailments this year alone, ad natural disasters have already affected accounts and the companies’ commitments to their sales contracts, particularly to the Indian and Chinese markets.

Until December of last year the Brazilian mining company transported over 2 million tons of coal along the Sena railroad on 1,000 trains, whilst Rio Tinto transported 35,000 tons of coal.

According to the Mozambican press officials from the Vale group are currently in Mozambique to assess the situation and the lack of infrastructure and inefficiency of the Sena line and plan to “deal with this at the highest level soon.”

As well as the 10 kilometres of railroad destroyed due to last week’s derailment, rains in Mozambique have led to huge losses on the line and in some places the water has washed away the rails, sleeper and ballast and even destroyed some small bridges.

The Sena railroad has been under repair since last May, which is expected to cost US$45 million. (macauhub)