Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/123456789/15373
Title: THE IMPACTS OF RAILWAYS TRANSPORTATION ON THE SUDANESE ECONOMIC GROWTH
Authors: Abd El Rahman Mohamed Fahmi
Keywords: Wachstumstheorie
TRANSPORTATION -- Railroads --Sudan
Issue Date: Oct-2004
Publisher: Al-Neelain University
Abstract: Transport plays an important role in the life of a community. lt utilizes a considerable proportion of the available resources. The ntunber of people engaged in the handling and movement of goods is greater than in any other industry. Transport cost is a part of the cost of production and distribution of goods. Thus improvement of the transport system will reduce the final price and increase disposable income. Thus transport development went in the same pace as the progress achieved in man’s life. The development of civilizations and the increase in economic activities and trade led to improvements road and water transport. The growth of tlle industrial revolution and the increase in industrial production initiated the development of the railways as a new means of transport. The development of railways resulted in a great increase in passenger and freight traltic as they offered higher speed and lower costs . The 20th century witnessed the rapid growth of motor vehicles and air transport. Motor vehicles manufacture was more rapid in USA where they were produced in large quantities and standard design. The initial flight efforts were made by experimental balloons. The first successful flight \\-as tirade ln December 1903 in the USA . Each mode of transport operates through some facilities and equipment with certain technical characteristics, which bring some advantages and disadvantages to its operations and determine its costs and price structure. The railways have very high carrying capacity. A single locomotive can haul a train of 30 wagons each canying 25 tons of cargo i.e. a net load of 750 tons. This is equivalent to the load of 50 trucks each carrying l5 tons of cargo. l\/loreover the railway route capacity can be increased to allow the operation of more trains. Due to the existence of a large proportion of fixed costs, the railways average costs tend to decline with the increase in traffic and length of haul. Thus the railways are suitable for the Sudan where production is formed mainly of agricultural crops which are harvested and transported during a limited seasonal period and where the distance from the production regions to the market centers and the sea port is very long . The truck is a complete transport unit with its cargo space and the motive power and the attendant costs of fuel, maintenance and drivers wages. Due to its limited capacity and as the operating costs increase with the haulage distance, the truck is suitable for the movement of small lot shipments and for short and medium’ distances. River transport is slow, but has very low costs. Thus it is suitable for the movement or bulk cheap cargo such as building materials and minerals .. Air transport has the advantage of high speed and is suitable l’or the movement of long distance passenger and light high value cargo traffic. Pipe litres have low flexibility. They are suitable for the movement oflimited types oftraffic mainly oil, gas or water . The main purpose of the initial railways construction in the Sudan was military, for the transport of the invading army -and supply materials to the inside of the country. The lirle was extended from Halfa to Nyala in the west and to Wau in the south. lt was extended to Swakin and Port Sudan on the Red Sea coast. In order to utilize the agricultural land of Al Gazira region the line was extended from Khartoum to Medani and then to Sennar and Al Obeid. 'l'he line extension from l-laiya to Kssala, Al Gadaret and then to Sennar provided an alternative loop line to the sea port. It facilitated the utilization of the agricultural land at Al Gash delta and Gedarif region. The railways line was extended to Rosseires and to'k.arima . The railways assisted in the construction of Sennar, Rossaire and Khashm Al Girba dams. The extension of the line to the Red Sea coast opened new markets for the Sudanese exports. The railways were essential for the success of Al Gazira Scheme, as a result of which the Sudan became a major exporter of cotton . The railways were operating efficiently during the l960’s. However by the beginning of the l97O’s their performance started to decline due to the lack of spare parts required for maintenance and increased road competition resulting from the construction of trunk roads, mainly Port Sudan/l\'hr'toum road. By the mid-l980’s the railways were operating at 20% of their capacity As a result of the low railway perfonnance, road transport fi'eight traffic increased considerably . The position of other available modes was as follows. The performance of the River Transport Corporation declined considerably and specially during the past five years due to the war conditions and the lack of spare parts required for maintenance ..The length of paved roads excluding roads at the cities is 3,223 kilometers. This includes Khartoum/Port Sudan road which is l,2O0 kilometers long .. The port traffic increased considerably ir1 line with the increase in the country’s exports and imports. Several improvements were implemented including the construction of general cargo and container births and the introduction of new handling equipment. Osman Digna port is engaged in handling of passengers and small quantities of cargo traffic. Bashayer port handles petroleum traffic .. The (‘ivil Aviation Corporation is responsible of the construction of airports. The construction of the new Khartoum airport is under study. Sudan Airways and other private companies are providing air freight services . Sudan has vast agricultural. mineral and other natural resources which are not geatly utilized due to the lack ol’ capital. The signing of the peace agreement and the atmosphere of reconciliation and political stability will provide attractive enviromnent for foreign investment in the Sudan. Additionally the increase in oil exports will provide sufficient capital for the exploitation of the available resources. This will result in great increase in production and in the demand for transport services. Thus in order to assess tlreaioltrrne of future trafiic, a hypothetical l5 years plan was made for the growth in agricultural, industrial and minerals production. These three sectors contribute about 70% of the GDP. Estimates of future production were made on the basis of the average growth rate in the production of the main connnodities during the past five years . The quantity of production \\-hich will be available for transport had been allocated among the various modes on the basis of the traffic volume and type of required services. Thus the railways will handle such products as dura and wheat. They will also transport development materials and equipment from the port. Road transport will handle small shipments for short and meditun distances and cargo requiring special equipment e.g. perishable items. They will compete with the railways for the transport of valuable items and express import and export shipments. Road transport will play the main role in handling inter-city passenger traffic. Air transport will handle long distance passenger and small lot express cargo shipments. River transport will handle development materials to the war affected areas and the transport of timber and other products of the region. The northen reach will agricultural crops and petroleum products . To Assess the pressure which will be exerted on the existing transport system in the very short run, the total production for the year 2008 amounting to 10,97 million tons is allocated among the various modes of transport as follows: The railways 5,96 million tons about 54%. road transport 3,71 million tons about 34%, air transport 3,71 million tons about 9% and river transport 0,27 million tons about 3%. These estimates greatly exceed the existing canying capacities of the available transport modes, specially the railways and the river transport services . The private sector presently handles nearly most of the road cargo traffic. Thus existing companies will respond to the increase in traffic by expanding their carrying capacities. New companies will enter the road transpoit business, specially as the initial investment is not substantial. Thus sul'ticient canying capacity will be available for handling the expected increase in trallic . Sudan airways and other prirzrte companies are presently handling domestic and international air freight traffic. Thus existing companies will increase their canying capacities in response to the increase in traffic. The realized profits will attract new investment in the air transport business either for expansion of the existing companies or the formation of new airfreight concerns. Thus the resulting increase in canying capacity will be sufficient to handle the quatttity allocated for haulage by air transport . The provision of the necessary Funds will enable the Steamer Services Corporation to purchase the spare parts required for maintenance of the existing fleet and the procurement of additional units. This will greatly expand the available canying capacities. Thus the improved per"t'ormance of the Corporation taking in consideration the end of the war in the south and the participation of ‘the private sector in the operation of steamer services will provide sufficient capacity to handle the expected traffic . However the situation is ditTerent for the railways operations which do not allow wide participation of the private sector. This is mainly due to the large initial capital required for the provision of specialized equipment and facilities. Additionally in most cases the available traffic tnay not allow more than one company to cover the total costs. Accordingly entry and exit from the railway brtsiness is not as easy as it is the case with other industries. Thus the r'ailwa_\~' business tends towards monopoly rather than competition in the provision of service. For example lndia Railways is the largest railway under a single administration. Although some private companies are presently operating passenger and cargo trains on the existing lines, yet their operations are limited and will not be sufficient to handle the expected traffic. However the private sector can invest in the operation of new or existing railway lines or the construction of terminals on the basis of concession agreements or “Build-Upcrate-Transfer (BOT)” arrangement. Accordingly on the short run sufficient funds should be provided to purchase the spare parts required for maintenance. Additional locomotives and wagons should be introduced to increase the carrying capacity. On the basis of these improvements it is forecast that the railways will handle 7,25 million tons. However this volume is less than the quantity allocated for railways transport in the hypothetical plan amounting to l0,40 in 2018. The difference represents the deficiency gap ill the provision of the transport services resulting from the expected increase in production. The elimination of this gap can be achieved on the long run by expansion of the railways route capacity which includes doubling the line Port Sudan/ Haiya, widening of the railways gauge, introduction of concrete sleepers. Such improvements will increase the number of trains, their average load and speed and create sufficient capacity to meet the future traffic . The expected economic growth will result in great increase in the volume of exports and imports. This should be met by similar expansion of the sea ports storage and handling facilities and construction ofadditional berths .
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/123456789/15373
Appears in Collections:PHD theses : Economic

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