Chinese Firm to Build Communication Solution for Kenya's Railway

Nairobi — Chinese telecommunication giant Huawei said Thursday it has won a major railway contract to build a train-to-ground communications solution fully integrated with train signal systems for Kenya's Mombasa-Nairobi railway line.

In a statement received in Nairobi, Huawei said it will provide the GSM-R dispatching communications network as well as backbone optical transmission network, clock and synchronization system, and power and environment monitoring system to the region.

After completion, the Mombasa-Nairobi railway line's GSM-R network will carry multiple communications tasks, including mission-critical train dispatch, emergency communications, section maintenance communications, and transmission of train control data along the entire line, the statement said.

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Tanzania to connect electricity to Kenya and Zambia

Tanzania is set to finish two major projects that will connect electricity to Kenya and Zambia by 2019, this is according to the ministry of Energy and Minerals.

The Deputy Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Energy and Minerals, Dr. Juliana Pallangyo confirmed the news during a Southern Africa Power Pool (SAPP) executive committee meeting and said that Tanzania was missing a chance to trade power with otherSouthern Africa Development Community (SADC) member countries due to not being interconnected.

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France approves Sh28bn for Kenya's infrastructure

Kenya has signed seven memorandums of understanding that will see the country receive up to 250 million euros (Sh28.8 billion).The agreements were signed after President Uhuru Kenyatta met his French counterpart Francois Hollande for bilateral agreements.The financing includes grants and loans negotiated through the national Treasury to finance several infrastructure projects in the country.This is the first time the presidents of the two countries are meeting in fourteen years.Cabinet secretaries Amina Mohamed, Henry Rotich, Najib Balala and Eugene Wamalwa have accompanied President Kenyatta on the state visit.

A bulk of the money Sh13.8 billion (120 million euros) will be used to finance the Last Mile Connectivity Programme.Of this, 90 million euros is being given to the country as a Concessional Loan, with the remaining 30 million euros as a grant.

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Kenya leads region in construction projects

Kenya leads the East African region in terms of mega construction projects. The country has 20 ongoing large projects followed by Ethiopia at 12. East Africa holds 20 per cent of all construction projects in Africa and 15 per cent in dollar value at $57.5 billion (Sh 5.8 trillion) in 2015, which is a slight fall from $60.7 billion (Sh6.2 trillion) in 2014. Basic infrastructure projects, transport and energy, are top on the Kenyan development agenda, with transport taking the lion's share of 51 per cent and energy at 30 per cent. The figures were released yesterday by consultancy firm Deloitte East Africa in a report titled Africa Construction Trends 2015. Kenya's standard railway project (SGR) is the fourth most expensive project in the region, gobbling up $3.8 billion (Sh386 billion at current rates), with Tanzania's port at Bagamoyo coming top at a cost of $11 billion (Sh1.119 trillion). The report also indicates Kenya is experiencing growth in the retail sector, where hotel space, modern office parks, entertainment and lifestyle facilities are experiencing a boom due to expansion of towns and cities and a growing middle class.East African projects are predominantly financed by International Development Finance Institutions (DFIs), followed by funding from the governments.

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