19 Jun 2013

Fiji sugar corp chief says railways underutilised

6:27 am on 19 June 2013

The Executive Director of the Fiji Sugar Corporation says his company's railway infrastructure is underutilised and could solve a number of transport issues in the Western Division.

The Fiji government is in discussions with the company about developing a network that could carry passengers and cargo between Sigatoka and Ra.

The railways are currently only used for a few months of the year to transport sugar cane between plantations and mills.

Abdul Khan says if railways were better utilised they would ease congestion and give people in villages better access to urban areas.

"Basically I think it's a shame to have such and investment there that only gets utilised part of the year and the rest of the year it seems to sit idle and hence the reason for doing what we're thinking of doing."

Abdul Khan says he hopes to have a business case on the viability of the railway by the end of the year, with an aim of having the trains operating by 2016.