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Kenyans get training to run railway

Updated: 2015-05-27 07:34
By Hou Liqiang in Voi, Kenya (China Daily)

The Chinese company constructing the Mombasa-Nairobi Standard Gauge Railway in Kenya said it would transfer more technology and help Kenya train personnel in railway maintenance and operation, as Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta inspected a bridge construction site at the ongoing project on Tuesday.

According to China Road and Bridge Corporation, it has trained about 1,000 of the 5,000 Kenyan workers it plans to train for railway construction and management, including roadbed construction engineers and culvert construction engineers. Currently, CRBC employs 10,889 Kenyans.

Meanwhile, the company has been working on building a talent pool for the operation of the railway, training drivers, technical and maintenance personnel.

Lu Shan, the general manager of CRBC, said the company planned to send 60 Kenyans to study in China for five years, including one year's preparation for Chinese language and four years study in railway related majors.

Meanwhile, the company is still in discussions with the Kenyan government to build a railway training institute in Kenya, Lu said.

Li Juguang, a spokesman for CRBC., said that the company, with Kenya Railway Coporation and the project supervisor, will make a comprehensive guide for Standard gauge railway construction technology and management for Kenya, which could facilitate future projects.

"What we are bringing to Kenya is not just a railway but also advanced knowledge and skills that will help in the design, construction and operation of the railway system," Li said.

Atanas Maina, managing director of Kenya Railway Coporation, said he appreciates CRBC for the training of Kenyans.

The trainees may also be able to take part in other railway projects in other East African countries to help with the construction of the whole East Africa railway network.

The inspection came as CRBC has achieved great success in putting the project forward.

According to CRBC, they have finished 28 percent of the roadbed construction, 23 percent of the construction of the bridges and 29 percent of the culverts needed along the line, all ahead of schedule. Meanwhile, 87 percent of the needed land acquisitions have been finished.

The project officially started in January and is scheduled to be finished in 2017.

The 472.25-kilometer Mombasa-Nairobi Standard Gauge Railway will cost up to $3.8 billion, and the Import-Export Bank of China is offering 90 percent of the funding. The ambitious project is expected to boost economic growth in Kenya by 1.5 percent.


 Kenyans get training to run railway

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta (third from right) inspects Tsavo River Super Bridge, part of the Mombasa-Nairobi Standard Gauge Railway project - built by China Road and Bridge Corp - in Voi on Tuesday. Xie Songxin / China Daily

(China Daily 05/27/2015 page12)

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