News & Information



23
February
2021

Northern Corridor: Rail Market Share improved from 5 to 21 per cent in just three years


By: TTCA
Summary/Brief
Since the launch of the Standard Gauge Rail (SGR) Cargo train in 2018, the Railway industry was positioning itself to be the transport mode of choice along the Northern Corridor region. By January 2021, the rail evacuated 21% cargo based on the Mombasa Port throughput; SGR hauling approximately 19.12% market share of combined imports and export volumes, mainly containerized cargo, excluding transshipment cargo. Imports containerized market share by rail was about 39.33% for both Transit and local markets.


Since the launch of the Standard Gauge Rail (SGR) Cargo train in 2018, the Railway industry was positioning itself to be the transport mode of choice along the Northern Corridor region. By January 2021, the rail evacuated 21% cargo based on the Mombasa Port throughput; SGR hauling approximately 19.12% market share of combined imports and export volumes, mainly containerised cargo, excluding transhipment cargo. Imports containerised market share by rail was about 39.33% for both Transit and local markets.

According to the Kenya Railways data, 22% of throughput imports being fuel were moved by pipeline and approximately 57% of imports cargo was carried by Road Transport; an improvement from the previous 95% and 5% market share held by Road and the rail transport respectfully.

As per the Railway Logistics in Kenya, the industry intends to expand its scope on conventional and bulk cargo to achieve a 40% market share by 2022. 

SGR_Double_Deck.jpg

Kenya Railway resumed the double-stack cargo train service between Mombasa and ICD Nairobi to improve daily cargo evacuation and efficiency of the Port of Mombasa.

From January 2018 to January 2021, the total volumes hauled by Madaraka Express Freight Services (MEFS) as the SGR  freight is referred to,  was 11,960,533 Tons, of which 703,445 TEUs were imports, 42,374 TEUs were exports, and 380,477 TEUs Empty Containers.

The completed projects that supported such tremendous improvement of MEFS market share include; the operationalisation of the Naivasha Inland Container Depot, a Grain Bulk Handlers Limited (GBHL) Nairobi Bulk storage facility connected with SGR siding; a GBHL Loading facility at Mombasa Port; modification of types of wagons into load containerised cargo; completion of the Kenya Railway Transit shed, and the refurbishment of the Meter Gauge Rail line Nairobi-Nanyuki to attract more exports cargo.

Other ongoing rail market share enabling projects include modifications of more wagons to move more containerised cargo, revamping the Meter gauge link line from Naivasha ICD to Longonot MGR Station, Kisumu and Malaba as well as the construction of steel coil carriers (Saddles).

The Northern Corridor has two major rail networks: The Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) and the Meter Gauge Railway (MGR). The meter gauge rail network runs from Mombasa Sea Port through Nairobi, Malaba, and Kampala to Kasese in Western Uganda, next to the Democratic Republic of Congo. A branch line radiates from Nakuru to Kisumu on Lake Victoria, where rail wagon ferries link to Uganda’s railway system at Port Bell. Another rail branch line runs from Tororo in Eastern Uganda to Pakwach in Northern Uganda, where river steamers used to provide Nimule links in South Sudan.

In Uganda, the total developed Rail Network (Meter Gauge Rail) covers 1,250 km. In Kenya, Railway services are provided via SGR and MGR. The SGR (561km) currently links the port of Mombasa to the Kenyan town of Naivasha, through Nairobi. The 1,083 km MGR links Mombasa to Malaba with 165 km commuter network in Nairobi, 217km from Nakuru to Kisumu and 220km from Nairobi to Nanyuki.





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