Tanzania Standard Gauge Railway

The Tanzania Standard Gauge Railway is a railway system, under construction, linking the country to the neighbouring countries of Rwanda and Uganda, and through these two, to Burundi and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, as part of East African Railway Master Plan. The new Standard Gauge Railway (SGR), is intended to replace the old, inefficient metre-gauge railway system.[1][2]

Tanzania Standard Gauge Railway
StatusPhase 1 complete, in testing
Phase 2 and 3 under construction
TypeHeavy rail
Operator(s)Tanzania Railways Corporation
Line length1,800 km (1,100 mi)
Track gauge1,435 mm (4 ft 8+12 in) standard gauge
Electrification25 kV 50 Hz AC overhead catenary
Route map


This 1435 mm (4 ft 8+12 in) railway line is intended to ease the transfer of goods between the port of Dar es Salaam and the cities of Kigali, in Rwanda and subsequently to Bujumbura, in Burundi, and to Goma, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. From the lake port of Mwanza, surface water ferries are expected to transport goods between Mwanza and Port Bell and Bukasa Inland Port, in Kampala, Uganda's capital city.[3][4][5] The SGR system in Tanzania, in conformity with neighboring Rwanda and Uganda is designed to use electricity to power its locomotives.[6]

The SGR is expected to accommodate passenger trains traveling at 160 kilometres (99 mi) per hour and cargo trains traveling at 120 kilometres (75 mi) per hour.[7]


The railway system would consist of several major phases:

Phase 1Edit

Dar es Salaam–Morogoro Section

The first phase has been completed in April 2022 currently in live testing phase. It covers the distance of 300 kilometres (186 mi), from the city Dar es Salaam to Morogoro.[8]

This section, measuring 300 kilometres (186 mi), was contracted to a 50/50 consortium comprising Yapi Merkezi of Turkey and Mota-Engil of Portugal. Construction began in April 2017 and Yapi Merkezi have been showing the progress of construction with monthly video reports on YouTube.[2] Partial funding for this section, amounting to US$1.2 billion, was borrowed from the Export Credit Bank of Turkey.[9] There are six stations: Dar es Salaam, Pugu, Soga, Ruvu, Ngerengere and Morogoro. Three trains will make daily round trips.[10]

With infrastructure complete electrical test,[11] and live train trials began in late April, 2022.

Phase 2Edit

Morogoro–Makutopora Section

The second phase covers a distance of approximately 426 kilometres (265 mi),[12] from Morogoro via Dodoma to Makutopora in Manyoni District, Singida Region.[13] In September 2018, the government of Tanzania secured a soft loan from Standard Chartered Bank, amounting to US$1.46 billion, for the funding of this section of the country's SGR.[9] This section was also contracted to the consortium that is constructing the Dar es Salaam–Morogoro Section. The stations after Morogoro will be Mkata, Kilosa, Kidete, Gulwe, Igunda, Dodoma, Bahi and Makutopora.

As the end of July 2022, the work has reached 90 percent, and will be completed by Dec 2022.[14]

Phase 3 (aka phase 3, lot 1)Edit

Makutupora–Tabora Section

The third phase will cover from Makutupora to Tabora which includes 7 stations and 294 kilometers of mainline and 74 kilometers of intersections for a total of 368 kilometers at a cost of $1.9 billion (TZS 4.41 trillion). The contract has been awarded to Yapi Markezi who has constructed the first two phases. The foundation stone was placed in April, 2022 with work to start immediately.[15]

Phase 4 (aka phase 3, lot 2)Edit

Tabora–Isaka Section

The fourth phase will cover Tabora to Isaka, 130 kilometres (81 mi). As of August 2022, the Tabora–Isaka section it has been awarded to Yapi Markez[16] and work is in the mobilization stage.

Phase 5Edit

Isaka–Mwanza Section

This section, measuring approximately 341 kilometres (212 mi), from Isaka to the city of Mwanza, on the southern shores of Lake Victoria. In January 2021, The Citizen newspaper reported that two Chinese companies had been selected to construct this section of the SGR. China Civil Engineering Construction (CCEC) and China Railway Construction Company (CRCC), were selected to carry out the work at a contract price of approximately TZS:3 trillion (approx. US$1.3 billion).[17] Later that month, The EastAfrican reported that Tanzania had secured funding worth $1.32 billion, through the Government of China, for the purpose of building this section of the SGR.[18] This section is under construction.[19]

Phase 6Edit


This section, measuring approximately 506 kilometres (314 mi), from Tabora to Kigoma on the eastern shores of Lake Tanganyika. The contract was signed on December 20, 2022 between the Government of Tanzania and China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC) and China Railway Construction Company (CRCC) for the construction of the railway.[20][21]

Further planned phasesEdit

Isaka–Rusumo Section

This stretch of the SGR is component of the Isaka–Kigali Standard Gauge Railway, and measures approximately 371 kilometres (231 mi). Construction of this section is budgeted at US$942 million.[22] In April 2018, the EastAfrican newspaper reported that the World Bank had expressed its willingness to fund the Isaka-Kigali Standard Gauge Railway.[1]


Up until February 2020, the government of Tanzania was using locally generated funds and short-term temporary loans to fund the construction of the first two phases of this standard gauge railway project.[23]

In February 2020, the government received a syndicated loan worth US$1.46 billion, towards the completion of the first two phases of the national SGR. The financing package has Standard Chartered as lead arranger and the Export Credit Agencies of Denmark and Sweden, as major funding sources.[24] The combined contract value for the first two phases is US$2.35 billion with US$950 million worth of funding to be organized by the Tanzania Ministry of Finance and the remaining US$1.45 billion by Yapı Merkezi.[25]


ÖBB 1014

The first operating locos on the SGR are second-hand Austrian Federal Railways class 1014 model electric locomotives. These are primarily used for testing.[26] In addition, TRC has contracted with Hyundai Rotem for the supply of multiple units and electric locomotives.[27]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b Olingo, Allan (29 April 2018). "Tanzania turns to World Bank to fund its modern railway project". The EastAfrican. Nairobi. Retrieved 16 September 2018.
  2. ^ a b TanzaniaInvest.com (14 April 2017). "Dar Es Salaam-Morogoro Standard Gauge Railway Works Start". Dar es Salaam: TanzaniaInvest.com. Retrieved 16 September 2018.
  3. ^ Barigaba, Julius (27 June 2018). "Uganda resumes cargo operations on Lake Victoria after a decade". The EastAfrican. Nairobi. Retrieved 16 September 2018.
  4. ^ Tairo, Apolinari (9 July 2018). "Tanzania unveils cargo train to Uganda". The EastAfrican. Nairobi. Retrieved 16 September 2018.
  5. ^ The Citizen Reporter (27 June 2018). "Tanzania's MV Umoja resumes Port Bell-Dar route after 10 years". The Citizen (Tanzania). Dar es Salaam. Retrieved 16 September 2018.
  6. ^ Olingo, Allan (18 March 2018). "Rwanda, Tanzania agree on electric SGR, opt for open tender". The EastAfrican. Nairobi. Retrieved 16 September 2018.
  7. ^ Xinhua (15 March 2018). "Tanzanian president launches construction of new phase of standard gauge railway". Beijing: Xinhua. Archived from the original on 15 March 2018. Retrieved 16 September 2018.
  8. ^ Rwanda, Taarifa (20 July 2021). "Tanzania SGR train to begin operations in November".
  9. ^ a b Olingo, Allan (15 September 2018). "Tanzania secures $1.46 billiob SGR loan from Stanchart". The EastAfrican. Nairobi. Retrieved 16 September 2018.
  10. ^ Allan Olingo (11 May 2019). "Dar SGR project inches closer to reality as locomotives to test phase one arrive". The EastAfrican via Pressreader.com. Nairobi. Retrieved 12 May 2019.
  11. ^ "Majaribo ya Mifumo ya Umeme Katika Reli ya Kisasa (SGR ) DAR- MORO Yaanza Rasmi". Shirika la Reli Tanzania. Retrieved 2 May 2022.
  12. ^ Oirere, Shem (7 January 2022). "Turkish Firm Nabs $1.9B Rail Contract in Tanzania". Engineering News Record.
  13. ^ Raimund Vogelsberger, Dimitri Militschenko (30 August 2019). "Non-Technical Summary: Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) for the Standard Gauge Railway Line (SGR) Project, Dar es Salaam – Makutopora, Tanzania" (PDF). yapimerkezi.com.tr.
  14. ^ "Tanzania's SGR set to start operations end of April". The East African. 13 April 2022.
  15. ^ "JIWE LA MSINGI MRADI WA SGR MAKUTUPORA - TABORA". Shirika la Reli Tanzania. Retrieved 2 May 2022.
  16. ^ "Tabora – Isaka standard gauge railway contract signed". Railway Gazette International. Archived from the original on 20 July 2022. Retrieved 15 January 2023.
  17. ^ The Citizen Reporter (7 January 2021). "Two Chinese companies to construct Tanzania's fifth lot of SGR". The Citizen (Tanzania). Dar es Salaam. Retrieved 7 January 2021.
  18. ^ Dorothy Ndalu (11 January 2021). "Magufuli secures $1.32b China support for Tanzania SGR". The EastAfrican. Nairobi. Retrieved 11 January 2021.
  19. ^ Elias, Peter (2 December 2021). "Danadana majaribio treni ya SGR Dar - Moro". Mwananchi (in Swahili). Nation Media Group.
  20. ^ AFP (20 December 2022). "Tanzania signs $2.2bln railway deal with China". ARY NEWS. Retrieved 20 December 2022.
  21. ^ "Ujenzi SGR Tabora-Kigoma kukamilisha reli ya Kati". Mwananchi. 20 December 2022. Retrieved 20 December 2022.
  22. ^ Kabona, Esiara (29 January 2018). "Isaka-Kigali SGR works to start in October". The EastAfrican. Retrieved 16 September 2018.
  23. ^ John Fidelis (19 November 2019). "Tanzania close to securing funding for second phase of SGR project". Nairobi: Construction Review Online.
  24. ^ Emmanuel Onyango (15 February 2020). "Tanzania's SGR on track after govt secures $1.46b more for project". The EastAfrican. Nairobi. Retrieved 15 February 2020.
  25. ^ Başar Arioğlu (5 October 2018). "Yapı Merkezi Experience in Africa - EIC Federation" (PDF). Izmir. Retrieved 13 October 2020.
  26. ^ Tanzania Railways Corporation - . | Facebook | By Tanzania Railways Corporation | MAJARIBIO YA TRENI YA UMEME YAENDELEA, retrieved 5 July 2022
  27. ^ "Hyundai Rotem wins contract to deliver train cars to Tanzania". Railway Technology. www.railway-technology.com. 7 July 2021. Retrieved 3 November 2022.

External linksEdit