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Tunisia: sharp decline in phosphate transportation from Gafsa

The railway transportation of phosphate, goods and passengers sharply declined as a result of the resumption of protests in the mine basin, particularly in Zanouch.

“Transportation of commercial phosphate from the Gafsa Phosphate Company (CPG) units in Redayef, Om Larayes, El M’dhilla, Kef Eddour to the Tunisian Chemical Group (GCT) plants in Tunis has been paralyzed for nearly a week now,” said a source from the regional management of the Tunisian National Railways Company (SNCFT).

“The transport of phosphate is currently limited to loading of specific quantities of this product from Metlaoui to Gabes,” the same source added.

The resumption of protests in the mine basin, a week ago, caused, in particular, stoppage of work at the GCT’s M’dhilla plant and a lack of water supply in most of the CPG cleaning units.

Daily quantities of phosphate loaded from Gafsa and dedicated to exports or production of fertilisers have been at 8 thousand tons, for a week now, compared with 20 thousand tons under normal conditions.

Traffic of goods and passengers is also entirely paralyzed from Tozeur through Gafsa to Sfax and Tunis, because of a sit-in observed by unemployed people at the railway station of Zanouch for a week now, said the same source.

SNCFT is suffering financial losses estimated at 120 thousand dinars per day because of these disruptions (decline or entire stoppage of activities).


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