Angola train service Namibe-Lubango to be revived
A pilot phase testing a mixed freight and passenger service between Namibe Port and Lubango was completed by the Angolan government, in an attempt to revive all interrupted train services due to its long civil war from 1975-2002.
The projected service will have capacity for two freight wagons daily, increasing the number of trains currently running on the railway network managed by national railway company Caminho de Ferro de Moçamedes (CFM). The additional capacity for 300 passengers makes it the first passenger service on the Namibe-Lubango section.
After recovering the old rail infrastructure, the Angolan government wants to privatise all rail freight services as a second step towards developing a competitive rail transport industry. Rail freight services are currently ran by the three national companies of Caminhos de ferro de Luanda, de Moçamedes and de Benguela, but the government lacks qualified staff for train, locomotice and railway track maintenance works, having to outsource these costly tasks.
Reconstruction work of the railway network has been done by Chinese companies at a budget of 2.8 billion Euros. China Railway International Group repaired the Luanda rail track at a cost of 488 million Euros. China Railway 20 Bureau Group Corporation (CR20) did the samefor Benguela railway track, with a 1.3 billion Euros budget. Finally, Hiway rebuilt Moçamedes railway track at a cost of 163 million Euros.