Transport costs are 100% higher in Africa and other things are tough, but few African countries including Ethiopia are going beyond the talk to their fortunes. Here are three Ethiopian Projects listed among top 13 African Mega Projects in Transportation.
Ethiopia light-rail system
Ethiopia’s New Year arrived with a bang, as the Addis Metro chugged to life, making it the country’s, and sub-Sahara Africa’s first light rail system. With a price tag of close to $500 million the 32-kilometre electrified line has helped ease their daily commutes, Addis Ababa residents invariably tell you.
The transport system was built over three years by the China Railway Group Limited after the Ethiopian government secured 85% of funding from the Export-Import Bank of China.
Africa’s only other light rail systems are found in North Africa—including in Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia.
On November 21, the first freight train to operate on the new standard gauge railway reached Merebe Mermesa, some 112 km south of Ethiopia’s capital Addis Ababa, its inaugural journey pushed up by the current drought the country is facing. Contractors are now pushing the finishing touches on the 756-kilometre line by a June deadline, with current estimates being that work is 90% complete. The electrified $4 billion railway connects Addis Ababa to its main port of use, Djibouti. Built in three phases, it is largely financed and constructed by Chinese firms.
Ethiopia airport expansion
Ethiopia is currently expanding its main airport, as it seeks to become a regional aviation mega hub in the mould of Dubai. The Horn of Africa country seeks to take advantage of its plum geographic location between African and Asia with the phased project estimated to cost $350 million but which is the precursor of a planned second $4 billion airport.