VAOB Group CEO, Tony Burkson Notes Exciting Developments In Ghana's Rail Sector

In this interview we catch up with Tony. Tony Burkson VAOB Group and V-Rail from Ghana, a good friend of Railways Africa Magazine, to discuss some exciting developments happening in the Ghanaian rail sector.

Tony shares updates on the arrival of the two PESA DMU trains in Ghana, with the first already in the country and the second expected in September. Despite a minor accident during testing, repairs are underway and both trains are anticipated to be operational by the end of the year.

The trains will run on the Tema line, a critical route starting from the port of Tema and extending 100 kilometres inland to connect with Volta Lake. This line is set to enhance container traffic movement from the port inland.

Tony also discusses the launch of a new freight business by V-Rail, targeting products such as fuel, bananas, and cement. Collaborations with partners like Vectruis and SAFLog are set to support this venture, with plans to invest in rolling stock over the next 12 months.

Regarding the broader Ghanaian rail landscape, Tony highlights the awaited investment from Thelo DB to complete the Western Line, although economic challenges have slowed progress. He predicts more rail construction in Ghana by 2026-27, with the Tema line currently being the only standard gauge in the country.

Looking beyond Ghana, Tony notes that Eastern and Southern Africa are becoming hotspots for rail activity. He looks forward to the upcoming SARA conference, where V-Rail and its partner Pesa will showcase their latest developments, including a meter gauge locomotive and diesel multiple unit designed for the region.

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