Benguela Railroad in Angola increases freight and passengers

18 December 2015

The Benguela Railroad (Caminhos-de-Ferro de Benguela – CFB) this year transported 27,000 tons of various goods and 461,000 passengers, said Thursday in Lobito the company’s president, José Carlos Gomes.

The president of CFB said freight transport represented an increase of 42.4 percent compared to the amount carried in 2014, while the number of passengers represented an annual increase of 29.7 percent.

Despite these increases, Gomes acknowledged that the company’s financial situation is weak and it remains dependant on the state budget to pay salaries and allowances.

Gomes also said the speed currently achieved by the trains was not ideal and the company was working on increasing it to 80-90 kilometres per hour.

CFB links the port of Lobito on the Atlantic Ocean coast, to the border town of Luau in the eastern part of the country, crossing the provinces of Benguela, Huambo, Bié and Moxico.

The line was completely rebuilt by the China Railway Construction Corporation (CRCC), under a public work project of Chinese design. The project involved construction of the line and 67 stations and supplying rolling stock, at an estimated cost of US$1.83 billion.

The Benguela Railroad company was established in August 1899 but work to build the railway itself began on 1 March, 1903 and was completed on 2 February, 1929.

Due to the civil war that devastated Angola, circulation in the railroad was interrupted for a period of 30 years, and resumed in August 2012. (macauhub/AO/CN)