Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin Photo: fmprc.gov.cn
The China-built Mombasa-Nairobi Railway has become a key booster for Kenya’s economic and social development and the improvement of its people’s livelihood, a spokesperson for the Chinese Foreign Ministry said on Thursday, as the railway celebrates its fifth anniversary.
The average occupancy rate of the railway stood at more than 90 percent in the past five years and it contributes more than 2 percent to Kenya’s GDP, while creating nearly 50,000 jobs with localized jobs reaching 80 percent, said Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin.
At the same time, it has trained more than 1,700 high-quality railway professionals specializing in technical areas and management, Wang said.
In recent years, the pace of China’s railways going global has been accelerating, with footprints in Asia, Europe, North America and Africa.
The construction of the China-Laos Railway has created 110,000 local jobs in Laos. It has also helped Laos build nearly 2,000 kilometers of roads and canals, and boosted the sales of local raw materials in Laos to over 5.1 billion yuan ($756 million), Wang said.
The Laos-China Railway Co, a joint venture based in Vientiane, capital of Laos, is responsible for the operation of the railway’s Laos section. The company said that since the China-Laos Railway opened last December, the cross-border goods transported on the railway have exceeded 1 million tons, according to the Xinhua News Agency on Wednesday.
Since the opening of the China-Laos Railway, freight transport has shown a rising trend, with goods such as daily life commodities, fertilizers, electronics, photovoltaics, textiles and vegetables shipped from China to Laos, while iron and zinc ore, cassava flour, barley rice, charcoal, rubber, potash and fruit have been transported from Laos and neighboring countries to China, Xinhua said.
From the Tanzania-Zambia Railway, the Mombasa-Nairobi Railway and the China-Laos Railway, to the Hungary-Serbia Railway and the Jakarta-Bandung High-speed Railway, China-built railways have not only brought Chinese products, technologies and services to the host countries, but also created better development opportunities for various countries and carried China’s friendship into these other countries, Wang said.