On Tuesday 13th July 2021, His Excellency, the President of the Republic of Malawi, Dr. Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera officially launched the 165-metre-long Shire North railway bridge along the Limbe-Balaka railway line. The project began in 2018 and ended in February 2021, costing approximately $13million.
In his remarks, President Chakwera had this to say; “The dawn of our democracy saw the rise of new generational leaders who failed to appreciate the ingenuity and pragmatism of a robust railway system. As a result, we are a country heavily dependent on more expensive modes of transport, into and across our country, this in turn has left Malawians in the unenviable position of paying 3 or 4 times more than neighboring countries for the same imported goods. Every person who claims to love Malawi aught to be an advocate of the resurrection of the rail system in this country.
The opening of this bridge which ensures complete connectivity between Limbe and Nkaya is a great step in the right direction. It will not only reduce transportation costs but spur development as well. The $13million that has been spent on this railway bridge is a worthy investment and I am confident that this will allow the trains to increase their frequency which will in turn economic activity for local businesses and communities alike.”
The newly launched bridge has a walkway for pedestrians and cyclists, easing mobility for community members to access social amenities on the other side of the bridge.
Representing the company, Nacala Logistics CEO, Welington Soares made these remarks; “On behalf of Nacala Logistics and all its shareholders, we are honored by your presence at this launch Mr. President and very grateful for the support we get from your government. Your support has made it possible for us to achieve a number of milestones in improving the railway sector in Malawi, one of which is the Shire North railway bridge which you have just inaugurated. We value the good relationship that we have with the government of Malawi hence our partnership in the transportation of fertilizer for the affordable farm input program demonstrated the trust that your government has in us to provide efficient logistics solutions to Malawian farmers on the ground.”
Nacala Logistics continues to invest in the railway sector despite overwhelming COVID-19 challenges.