——The road to prosperity and rejuvenation
On January 10 this year, in Djibouti, the capital of Djibouti, the East African country, an electrified passenger train made in China drove to Ethiopia for the first time along the Addis Ababa Djibouti Railway (from Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia to Djibouti, the capital of Djibouti), marking another step forward in the operation of the railway built by China.
According to the financial times, Addis Ababa Djibouti railway is an important investment project of China in East Africa, replacing the century old railway built by the French.
For Ethiopia, the Addis Ababa Djibouti railway project is a key part of its strategy to attract foreign investment, French news 24-hour television reported.
The Addis Ababa Djibouti railway is the first cross-border electrified railway in Africa built with Chinese railway technical standards and Chinese equipment. From financing, design, construction, equipment and materials to operation after opening to traffic, the whole industrial chain process is in the charge of China Railway and China Railway Construction Corporation. This 750 km long railway covers the Ethiopia plateau with an average altitude of more than 2500 meters from Djibouti with zero altitude. The design speed is 120 km / h, reducing the freight time from Addis Ababa to Djibouti from 3 days of the original road transportation to 10 hours.
Djibouti's "national daily" published an article entitled "the opening of the 100 year rejuvenation Addis Ababa Djibouti Railway". It believes that this railway leading to prosperity and rejuvenation will not only boost the economy of the two countries, enhance people to people exchanges between the two countries, but also strengthen regional economic integration. According to the Ethiopian News Agency, the Addis Ababa Djibouti railway has greatly shortened the freight transportation time from Djibouti to Addis Ababa, which will undoubtedly greatly promote Ethiopia's foreign trade and economic development.
Nearly 90% of Ethiopia's import and export channels rely on ports, and the opening of the Addis Ababa Djibouti railway is of great significance, the BBC reported. According to the Washington Post, the opening of the Addis Ababa Djibouti railway has made the local "old look new".
"In the serenade of the chorus of tribal singers, African leaders, European diplomats and pop idols swarmed up the steps of the new railway station, scrambling to squeeze into the new, air-conditioned carriages to take the first passenger train." When reporting the launching ceremony of the Addis Ababa Djibouti railway passenger train in January this year, a report on the website of the New York Times titled "Africans happily boarded the Chinese train" said that the train from the capital of Djibouti attracted some of the most important people in the horn of Africa. Ethiopian Prime Minister hailemariam said: "this is really a historic moment and the pride of our two countries and people. This route will change the social and economic landscape of our two countries. "
"Perhaps the biggest star of the day is China." China designed the railway system, provided trains and provided hundreds of engineers needed to plan and build the line, the report said. After building the world's most modern railway network at home, China is bringing its amazing resources and expertise to the world. "One belt, one road initiative" is part of the Chinese funded enterprises' annual investment in new ports, highways and airports around the country, which is about $50 billion, according to the "research project of the China Africa Studies" of the Institute of advanced studies of international issues, Johns Hopkins University.
Andrew Grantham, news editor of international railway magazine, said: "for a long time, railway development in Africa has been sluggish; but with the arrival of the Chinese, this situation is undoubtedly changing."
Ghana News Network said that Addis Ababa Djibouti railway will make outstanding contributions to the economic and trade development and technology transfer of East Africa.
Inner Mongolia Railway
——Kenya's economic growth catalyst
The railway under construction from Mombasa, the largest port in East Africa, to Nairobi, the capital of Kenya (hereinafter referred to as Mombasa Nairobi railway) is progressing smoothly. The project is the largest infrastructure project built in Kenya for more than half a century and is undertaken by a Chinese company.
The Mombasa Nairobi railway, which connects Nairobi with the Indian Ocean port of Mombasa, is one of China's most important investment projects in East Africa, according to an article published on the Financial Times website. The 300 mile railway will link the Kenyan capital to the port of Mombasa. Residents in Makindu, Kenya, are optimistic about the largest infrastructure project in more than 50 years since independence.
According to the article, in the past 10 years, China has developed rapidly from almost zero to become one of Kenya's most important trade and investment partners. Kenya imported railway vehicles and other equipment from China, and the import value soared to about 5 billion US dollars in 2016 (three times of 2010), while the import value from the United States was only 780 million US dollars.
The Mombasa Nairobi railway is the first section of an international railway, which will then extend to Kampala, Uganda, and finally reach Rwanda, connecting a large area of the emerging East African community trade group. It will replace the nearly deserted Railway built by the British at the end of the 19th century.
Ali Khan Satcher, an investment consultant in Nairobi, believes that if the Mombasa Nairobi railway makes Kenya a more efficient trade channel for East Africa, the economic benefits may exceed expectations.
Lilian wamuyu, who helped run the schools for the poor in Nairobi, said: "we heard that the British had put billions of shillings out to build roads, but they never built them. But if you see two Chinese working, you know that road will be built in two months. "
Kenya's Daily News commented that the Mombasa Nairobi railway is a catalyst for Kenya's economic growth. The Mombasa Nairobi railway will open in June this year, bringing unprecedented economic and social effects to Kenya and East Africa. Mombasa Nairobi railway is also a training base for Kenyan railway talents. Now 767 students are studying in the Railway Training College. In seven years, more than 3000 Kenyan employees will be operators and operators of the railway. The Mombasa Nairobi railway will not only reduce the cost of goods logistics, but also, more importantly, nurture the industrial economic belt along the line and create more jobs for Kenyan people.
The commentary said that the Mombasa Nairobi railway itself is the creator of jobs and the largest employer outside the government of Kenya. As of March this year, the number of employees of the project is nearly 13000, of which 11000 are Kenyans, accounting for 85.1%.
Kenyatta, Kenya's president, said he was very excited by the implementation process of the Mombasa Nairobi railway project. The railway planning in the design drawings has now appeared in front of the Kenyan people. He believes that there is no doubt about the quality of the Mombasa Nairobi railway; at the same time, the railway construction has created a large number of jobs for local people and trained a large number of local technical personnel. The Mombasa Nairobi railway project is crucial to Kenya's economic development, and will create more development opportunities for Kenya in the future, so that Kenya can further open up to local enterprises and foreign investors, which is of great benefit not only to Kenya, but also to the whole East African region.
Kenya's Star newspaper published an article entitled "Mombasa Nairobi railway, Kenya's new economic order". It said that the opening of this first-class standard railway in June this year will make Kenya's economic and social benefits unprecedented and comprehensive, and benefit other countries in the region. The travel situation between Mombasa and inland will be improved obviously, and the cost of goods and trade will be greatly reduced. More importantly, the railway will bring along an industrial economic belt and create more jobs.
Seven Kenyan women train drivers trained by China will take up their posts after the Mombasa Nairobi railway opens in June, Kenya's flag newspaper reported. Under the arrangement and support of China Road and Bridge Engineering Co., Ltd., the contractor of Mombasa Nairobi railway, they went to China Baoji Railway Technical College with other Kenyan male students to receive a half year training. Ma ina, general manager of Kenya Railway Bureau, said the plan to train female train drivers had achieved initial results. Kenya has its own female train driver for the first time in its history. According to reports, the first seven female students performed well, and Kenya Railway Bureau is confident that they will formally undertake their work tasks in the future. In the future, Kenya Railway Bureau will also incline its posts to women in the operation and maintenance of the whole line of Mombasa Nairobi railway.
(people's daily, Johannesburg, Beijing, April 29, by Li Zhiwei and Liu GE)