The revival of the Ethiopia-Djibouti railway line

The revival of the Ethiopia-Djibouti railway line

The revival of the Ethiopia-Djibouti railway line


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In eastern Africa, you can now reliably take the train from Ethiopia’s capital to neighbouring Djibouti. The new railway line – built and paid for by China – went into operation a few weeks ago. Over a century ago, the French had already built a rail line between the two African nations. It essentially stopped worked 10 years ago, but a few cars kept running. Now, in cities where the old line stopped, expectations for the new one are high. Our correspondents report.
A programme prepared by Patrick Lovett, Gaëlle Essoo, Hannah Gay and Florence Viala.
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50 Responses

  1. Some Frenchmen still missed their old days of being as Africa’s master and have a feeling of being lost when they found out chinese have overtaken them there,so they said bad things about China.

  2. Investing in abroad decisions by China has less bureaucracy bottlenecks than the foreign investment decisions by the western countries. That is the reason many African countries contact China for big project investments in their countries.

  3. Chairman Mao told Chinese people that our African friends carried us into UN on a sedan….It goes without saying that when China is capable, it will help its friends to the best of its ability. Today, China is capable of promising to help accomplishing African Union’s inspiration to industrialize the whole continent by 2063 every step of the way.

  4. Toxic Hilary visited Ethiopia some years ago to persuade their Government not to deal with the Chinese. Sensibly they didn’t listen to her.

  5. እግዚአብሔር ይመስገን አሁንም ኢትዮጵያውያን ተስፍችን በእግዚአብሔር ነው ገና ብዙ መልካም ነገሮች እንደሚመጡ ጌታ ተናግሮናል

  6. Africa has massive money possible in minerals etc…they didn’t need to wait all these decades to have china do it…Africa could have easily done it on their own.

    Africa..don’t think china is doing this is just to be friendly…China WILL..BE exploiting you..don’t think ANYTHING is for free..this will come at a big cost to Africa..wait and watch.

    China is looking to do -ECONOMIC colonialism…they will put in big projects..employ only so many natives..charge a big bill
    .when host country defaults..china swings in..takes over the railway as collateral and will drain the host country dry..plus will move in Chinese RESIDENCIES…you’ll see.

  7. Ethiopia steel has the railway that was built by France before WW2 ? It going to be used in ethiopia museum as part of history to future generation.

  8. Jean-Joseph Boillot said Ethiopian authorities are a minority and China does get a bad image out of that! Sir Jean-Joseph in your stay in Ethiopia you obviously haven’t learned anything besides strengthening your assumptions that you’ve held on for the past 35years. And how on earth does France channel choose to speak to this guy with speaking disabilities?

  9. Western is so jelous of china and worried of africa getting developed;) the west is afraid, they mmight become irrelevant in the tje next ten years and beyond;)

    It will now be asia and africa, middleast and russia;) hahaha

  10. Africa and the world have suffered a lot from European colonialism, land grab, genocides, stealing resources, slavery etc etc etc. Its time for France and others to SHUT UP and stop exploiting the world. China is investing and building in Africa unlike the French who colonized and occupied and ruled in Africa and other places.

  11. "Built and paid for by China?" How about "Built and financed by China?" Shading the language. Eh? The pompous French never disappoint, the Condescending tone and language and all! The French have no footprint in Ethiopia. Nada.

  12. It’s a pity the rail staff of the old narrow gauge railway aren’t retrained for the new railway. The new railway will take trucks off the road and decrease emissions and oil imports. The other spinoff is renewable electricity 100% clean and indigenous for the Ethiopian people.

  13. Lol paid by China, Ethiopia gets loans from China with low interest. Why? Bc the world bank refuses to give money to emerging economies. East African countries have cut lies with Europe.

    Financial crisis in China? China has literally RISKED millions in loans to Africa that could possibly NOT be paid back. The expert sounds so mediocre it’s hilarious! It’s funny how the same gov was getting backing from the West when they were puppets, but now they have aligned themselves with China they are totalitarian ? 😂

  14. The old railway was no longer up to standard for the people’s needs, so China stepped in to build something better to replace the old garbage. What else were they supposed to do, continue to lose out on modernity?

  15. Not cheap quality goods but top best trains township at 30% of Western cost and time
    West don’t have capability to build trains cross African continent

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