Ecuadorian state-owned rail company Ferrocarriles del Ecuador will invest US$59mn during 2011, the company's head of communications, Mayra Prado, told BNamericas.
The company plans to repair and improve 446km of the Quito-Guayaquil railway between capital Quito and Durán district in Guayas department. Work will be carried out on the following stretches: Riobamba-Palmira, Palmira-Ambato, Ambato-Latacunga and Yaguachi-Bucay.
The investment is part of a plan to restore rail connectivity between the country's coastal and mountainous areas, said Prado.
Ferrocarriles del Ecuador had initially planned to invest US$85mn during 2011, the firm's general manager, Jorge Eduardo Carrera, told BNamericas last year. After reviewing the budget, however, the national government decided to allocate the firm US$59mn for 2011.
The company is currently carrying out a US$245mn investment plan.
The Quito-Guayaquil railway has been referred to as one of the world's most difficult engineering projects. The route begins at sea level and reaches up to 3,600m above sea level at its highest point.