Railway Company Targets $100mln Annual Revenue from Freight Service

ADDIS ABEBA – Ethio–Djibouti Railway (EDR) Share Company targets to increase its annual revenue from freight service to $100mln, its officials announced on Thursday.

The company plan could be augmented through pairing four freight trains per day starting from November 2020, said Guo Chongfeng, assistant General Manager of CCECC.

EDR also targets to generate $150mln in 2023 by pairing 6 freight trains per day and 20 pair freight for the far future.

The assistant General Manager said this during a conference held by CCECC venture with CREC to review 1000 days.

Tilahun Sarka, General Director of EDR, said the increase in paring trains could enable the company to solve the challenges in the logistic system.

EDR benefits the nation by reducing its expenditure on high-cost commodities like imported petroleum and related items while being a time-saving and cost-effective transport solution for heavy and bulky loads as well as commuters, he added.

“We are working to transport 40 to 50 percent of what is now being transported by trucks,” said the General Director.

That means the company will have four freight train trips daily from Addis Ababa to Djibouti instead of two trips under current working capacity.

Constant delay in loading cargos, however, has been challenging the company’s work, said the assistant general director.

Lack of electric power and limited maintenance capacity are also among the main challenges the company is facing, Chongefeng added.

The railway – the first fully electrified cross-border railway line in Africa – links Addis Ababa to the Red Sea port of Djibouti – a stretch of more than 750km (466 miles).

Traveling at 120km/h, the new service cuts the journey time down from three days by road to about 12 hours.

The $3.4bn project was built with the help of funding from a Chinese bank and will have Chinese staff.

By Mhret G/kristos