The Sunday News
Dumisani Nsingo, Senior Business Reporter
THE National Railways of Zimbabwe (NRZ) has projected to increase its freight by 25,6 percent this year buoyed by the anticipated improved business and recapitalisation efforts.
NRZ public relations manager Mr Nyasha Maravanyika said the company has projected to move more than 4,2 million tonnes of freight this year, an increase from the 3 367 073 it ferried last year.
“The NRZ is projecting to move more than 4,2 million tonnes of freight during 2019. This is an increase of 25,6 percent to the cargo it transported in 2018. In 2018, the NRZ moved 3 367 073 tonnes between January and December. For 2019, the rail entity has set to move a target of 4 231 269 tonnes of cargo,” said Mr Maravanyika.
He said the company expects to move more than 200 000 tonnes of cargo this month with the monthly tonnage expected to increase in the coming months.
“More than 201 000 tonnes are expected to be moved in the first month of the year, with monthly tonnages increasing gradually to 380 909 tonnes by May. In the second half of the year, monthly tonnage movements are projected to exceed 400 000 tonnes, peaking at 464 845 tonnes in August before dropping to 280 559 tonnes in December,” said Mr Maravanyika.
NRZ has witnessed an increase in its freight business, the backbone of the company, since it received 13 locomotives, 200 wagons and seven coaches from the South African rail utility, Transnet under the Interim Solution Equipment Agreement in February 2018.
The equipment is being leased from Transnet as part of the $400 million recapitalisation framework agreement with the Diaspora Infrastructure Development Group (DIDG)/ Transnet Consortium.
The Interim Solution Equipment is a stop gap measure put in place to capacitate the organisation pending finalisation of the recapitalisation agreement which will see the NRZ acquiring its own rolling stock when the final agreement is signed.
Already six financiers have shown interest to shell out close to $1 billion into the project.