‘TAZARA still facing operational challenges’

NANCY MWAPE, Livingstone
THE Tanzania Zambia Railways (TAZARA) is still facing operational challenges emanating from tax-related issues at the port of Dar-es-Salaam despite strides made in restoring positive performances.
This is according to a statement issued by TAZARA head public relations Conrad Simuchile’s in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania, following a board meeting held on Friday last week.
Mr Simuchile management reported improvements in most operational indices in freight operations.
He cited improvement in security and safety in train operations as well as an average transit time of 6.3 days and a wagon turn-round time of 24 days between Dar-es- Salaam and Kapiri-Mposhi.
He said the improvements recorded during the period under review were mostly attributed to continued interventions by the two shareholding governments through the provision of working capital support, which facilitated an enabling business environment, and stability in operations.
“However, much as the management reported appreciable strides in restoring positive performance indices, the board, also, noted that there were still some operational challenges emanating from tax-related issues at the port of Dar-es-Salaam,” he said.
Mr Simuchile said the board however indicated that the relevant authorities were in the process of studying and streamlining some policies with a view to eliminating the perceived bottlenecks and improve business environment in both countries.
He said the board noted TAZARA’s continued improvements in both freight and passenger traffic as at the first quarter of the 2016/2017 financial year, which commenced on July 1, 2016, and ended on September 30, 2016.
“The board noted that TAZARA transported 29,061 metric tonnes of freight, an improvement of 9.4 percent compared to the corresponding first quarter of 2015/2016, when 26,571 metric tonnes was transported,” he said.
The board also noted improvement in performance of the interstate passenger trains between Dar-es-Salaam and New Kapiri-Mposhi by 20.2 percent, having transported 133,863 passengers during the first quarter of 2016/2017, compared to 111,335 passengers during the first quarter of 2015/2016.

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