Portion of the railway linking Ethiopia with Djibouti, Ethiopian-Djibouti Railway, will be inaugurated tomorrow, January 10, 2017. It will be only the portion in Djibouti that will be inaugurated tomorrow. The news was disclosed by Ethiopia’s Ministry of Public Enterprises.
The Ethiopia-Djibouti Railway is a standard gauge railway which links Addis Ababa with the Port of Djibouti. The railway will provide sea access for the landlocked Ethiopia via the trade which 95 percent Ethiopia’s trade is undertaken by.
Last October, the railway’s Ethiopian portion was inaugurated by Haliemariam Dessalegn, Prime Minister of Ethiopia, and President of Djibouti, Ismail Omar Guelleh. This section of has now commenced trial service and regular services are scheduled to start in mid 2017.
Most of the railway runs parallel to the abandoned meter-gauge, built a century ago. Nevertheless, the new gauge is built in a straighter right-of-way allowing the train to travel with a much higher speed.
The first 115 kilometers stretching from Sebeta to Adama are double track while from Adama to Port Djibouti is single track.
The line at first is initially used for freight with passenger services. This service will commence in 3 months time, Walta Information Center noted
The first freight services had actually run to a temporary unloading facility in Merebe Mermersa, 112 km south of Addis Ababa, in November 2015, when the partially-completed line and construction locomotives were used to move wheat which the government had imported for use in areas affected by drought.