The government of Thailand is set to invest at least US$8 billion in the construction of a deep water port in the Zambezia province of Mozambique, which will have a rail link to the coalfields of the Tete province.
“We have had success in investing in infrastructure and in development corridors and, in this context, we will invest in construction of a port in Macuse in Zambézia and a railway,” said Thai prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra, according to Macauhub News Agency.
The project for construction of the deep water port in Macuse was first announced, in December 2011 by mining group Rio Tinto, which has a coal mine in Benga, in the Tete province, according to the Mozambican Centre for Investment Promotion (CPI).
At the time, the director of CPI, Lourenço Sambo said that the project would involve an investment of US$8 billion, including, along with the port facility, construction of the Tete-Macuse railway, covering a total of 575km.
Rail transport for coal mined in Tete is currently carried out along the Sena line, which links the province to the port of Beira, in Sofala province, and refurbishment work on that line and the port is affecting exports by mining groups operating in the region.
As part of the official visit, the governments of Thailand and Mozambique signed five cooperation agreements, which included visa exemptions for diplomatic passports and development of activities in the oil and gas sector.
Thai state oil company PTT Exploration has significant investments in the oil and gas sector in the Rovuma basin, in the Cabo Delgado province of northern Mozambique.