Maputo, Mozambique — 22 February 2013 – It has been officially confirmed that the Sena railroad, which transports most of the coal mined in Mozambique’s Tete province to the port of Beira, will remain at a standstill for an undetermined period of time.
“Although we are carrying out emergency work, we cannot say when the line will be re-opened, because weather conditions remain threatening and that is something we cannot control,” said spokesman for state port and rail company Portos e Caminhos de Ferro de Mozambique (CFM) Alves Cumbe told Portuguese news agency Lusa.
The spokesman for CFM noted that there was no alternative to the Sena railroad for coal exports, as other options were being built or were under consideration, reports Macauhub News Agency.
Brazilian company Vale and Anglo-Australian company Rio Tinto are the multinational companies most affected by the stoppage, as they already produce and export coal from Tete.
On Monday, Vale said in a statement published in Rio de Janeiro that for reasons of force majeure Vale Mozambique was unable to fulfil its contracts to supply coal mined in the Tete province.
The Sena railroad has come to a standstill due to derailments and torrential rains that have washed away parts of the line and even some small bridges. This has meant that Vale Mozambique has been unable to transport around 250,000t of coking coal.
Until December of last year the Brazilian mining company had transported over 2Mt of coal along the Sena railroad on 1,000 trains, while Rio Tinto had transported 35,000t.
Source: Macauhub News Agency. For more information, click here.