Tanzania Plans Bridge Linking Dar Es Salaam And Zanzibar

The 50-kilometre bridge would help ease the movement of people and goods.

By Chriselle Moraes on
24th May 2023

The Tanzanian government is planning to build a bridge connecting the commercial capital of Dar es Salaam with the islands of Zanzibar. The 50-kilometre bridge is expected to be the longest in Africa.

Deputy Minister For Works and Transport, Geofrey Kasekenya confirmed during a parliamentary meeting on 28 April that talks were under way with a Chinese company to construct the bridge: “We have met with the prospective investors of China Overseas Engineering Group Company, and they have shown interest in building the bridge.” He added that talks about the project began in March and were at an advanced stage.

The idea for the bridge first arose in 2020 when it was proposed to build a sea bridge connecting Unguja Island and Dar es Salaam.

The government has estimated the bridge would cost about US$2.7 billion to build and it intends to develop the project through a public-private partnership. It has already secured some funding from the African Development Bank.

The bridge would support Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu Hassan’s agenda to promote intra-African trade, providing a faster, safer, and more reliable way of transporting people and goods between Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar. It would facilitate trade, tourism and investment opportunities between the two regions, promoting economic growth, creating jobs, and generally improving livelihoods.

Tanzania recently held talks with the Kenyan government about building a railway line linking the two countries. In collaboration with Burundi, Tanzania has also requested proposals to design and construct an electrified railway connecting the two nations and passing through the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Photo: A bridge under construction (© Alexey Savchuk | Dreamstime)

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