MOZAMBIQUE Ports & Railways has launched a US$26m programme to renovate its northernmost branch line, running from the Nacala corridor at Cuamba to the town of Lichinga in Niasa province. Work is already under way on refurbishing the transit corridor from the port of Nacala to the Malawi border at Entre Lagos.

Rehabilitation of the Lichinga line would be done in two phases. An initial US$10m programme of partial resleepering, some reballasting and drainage works would enable the reinstatement of a thrice-weekly freight train carrying up to 500 tonnes. The second stage, which could take up to eight years to complete, would complete the resleepering and full reballasting, with bridge renewals and embankment repairs. Costed at US$16m, this would lift the capacity to 0·4 million tonnes a year. o