HAVANA – The Cuban government plans “significant investments” in the island’s railway system this year, acquiring new equipment, state media reported, citing officials.
Cuba has purchased 112 new locomotives, 52 of which have already been delivered, for both freight and passenger trains, Cuban Railway Union deputy director Miguel Acuña said.
Passenger cars, freight cars, cement cars and a railroad telecommunications system will be acquired this year, Acuña said.
State media have labeled Cuba’s railway communications system “destitute.”
Transportation Minister Jorge Luis Sierra said in December that Gen. Raul Castro’s government spent $595 million on rail lines and equipment in 2009.
Excessive use of equipment, lack of trained workers, shortages of cars and irregular service are among the problems plaguing Cuba’s railroad industry, state media has reported.
The Cuban government periodically announces investments in the industry, including the purchase of 100 locomotives from China in 2008 and the acquisition of 28 more locomotives from Russia last year. EFE