Maputo-Harare container train service launched From left: Vinay Maharaj, Mark Pretorius, Mark Neel (DP World), Christian Roeder (DP World) at the launch of the new train service - Photo: DP World.

Business Writer 

DP World Maputo, which has the concession to manage, develop and operate the Maputo container terminal, last Friday handled the first dedicated container train service connecting Maputo and Harare, Zimbabwe.  

The new service is part of the company’s continued focus to expand its logistics and supply chain offering in the region, and key to its vision to connect several countries in Southern Africa — namely Maputo with South Africa, Zimbabwe and Swaziland — by rail.  

The new offering could present a multitude of new business opportunities for customers in Zimbabwe and Mozambique, according to the company.  

The services are expected to enhance DP World Maputo’s position as a gateway to Zimbabwe.  

It is also expected to offer significantly better transit times for customers in Zimbabwe.  

In the past, transit goods on their way to Harare would often have to be transported far greater distances by sea and road, but according to DP World this route will give customers a new, direct and faster option for delivery.  

Following the launch of the bi-weekly rail service, DP World Maputo said it will continue to work with all the stakeholders involved to make this a weekly train service between the two cities, to allow even greater cost saving and planning opportunities for businesses and individuals who need reliable, efficient transportation of goods.  

Christian Roeder, CEO of DP World Maputo said: “This rail service between Maputo and Harare is key to reopening the route between these markets to drive more efficient logistics in the region. Through this service, which we will facilitate and handle all port and border documentation, we can cut down transit times, give our customers better service and improve the connections between cities.”   

The rail service also follows the recent announcement of DP World Komatipoort in South Africa, handling its first transit import via Maputo.  

The development, according to DP World demonstrates that the Maputo Port can be seamlessly used as a gateway to South Africa’s hinterland using DP World Komatipoort. International container imports landed in Maputo port and destined for the South African hinterland, can now be moved under bond to Komatipoort, where full customs clearance can be provided and made ready for delivery across South Africa.  

DP World said it will continue to develop the Maputo Corridor, “a vital trade route in Southern Africa”, through investing in new infrastructure to meet local demand, while DP World Maputo’s container terminal capacity will also be enhanced, having already doubled in size between 2016 and 2018. —

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