From NASONGELYA KILYINGA in Dodoma, 29th June 2011 @ 13:00, Total Comments: 3, Hits: 672 THE multi-billion dollar Tanga-Arusha-Musoma Railway will not cut across the hotly contested stretch in the Serengeti National Park, to protect the world's heritage and the ecosystem of the park. The Minister for Transport, Mr Omar Nundu, made the remarks in Dodoma on Wednesday when signing a 3bn US dollars (about 4.5trl/-) Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the governments of Tanzania and Uganda, saying that the project would diverge at least 100km from the national park. Mr Nundu signed the MoU on behalf of the Tanzanian government, while Ugandan Minister for Works and Transport, Eng Abraham Byandala represented his government. The joint project, to start during this financial year would also develop the ports of Tanga (Mwambani), Musoma and Kampala. Mr Nundu said of the 3bn US dollars, some 1.9bn will cover the railway project, while 695.5 million go to Mwambani port. Musoma port will cost some 72.6 million US dollars, while 320million will be spent on developing Kampala port. "This is an important day for our two countries. It is a continuation of our strong economic relationship and cultural partnership, in fostering social and economic development of our two countries," said Mr Nundu. It was a common resolve for both Uganda and Tanzania to develop adequate, reliable, cost effective, efficient and seamless transport and telecommunication systems to boost railway transport. "We intend to involve Public-Private sector Partnership (PPP) for the development of agriculture, agro-industry, manufacturing, tourism, mining, transport and service sector," he said, adding: "We will also increase our efforts in seriously mobilizing funds from our own sources, from development partners, private sector and from financial institutions." He said the two governments would co-operate in implementation of the project through a joint task force. Eng Byandala said the development of Tanga-Musoma railway was in line with the government of Uganda's current policy to progressively increase the volume of Uganda's cargo through the Southern route to 50 per cent of the total export and import. He said in February 2008 consultations between the two governments were made to enhance the utilization of the new railway. He further said that due to limitations of the Dar es Salaam port the country decided to explore other options.