LOGISTICS company Spedag Kenya will spend Sh137.8 million ($1,346,074) to develop the Malaba Railway Yard into an intermodal cargo transfer facility, a first in the region. Half of the total project funding, Sh68.9 million ($673,037), is a reimbursable contribution, coming from Logistics Innovation for Trade, managed by Trade Mark East Africa.
The 18-month project, expected to begin next month February and be completed in June 2017, will improve storage, handling, and consolidating of cargo from rail to road and vice versa, to reduce costs of transport logistics for cargo.
“The project will not only reduce transit times for cargo transiting through the Malaba Railway Yard, but reduce the transportation costs along the Northern Corridor route – the target being a 20 per cent reduction in transit times between Mombasa and Nimule by the project’s end,” said David Mitchell, the fund manager in an email interview.
He said the project’s funding is awaiting the board’s approval.
The project will enable movement of cargo by rail from Mombasa port, then later the cargo can be loaded to trucks for onward transportation to other destinations in EAC, he said. It will link Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo and South Sudan to the port through rail and road.
Intermodal freight transportation is movement of freight using more than one means, and all parts of the transportation network are effectively connected and coordinated.