Uruguay's state-owned rail firm AFE will complete a project to repair and upgrade the Pintado-Rivera railway during the first half of 2011, the firm's general manager, José Nunes, told BNamericas.
The national government is investing US$30mn in the railway, which connects capital Montevideo with northeastern town Rivera, on the border with Brazil.
The 422km railroad project will include a station linking with Brazil's rail network, facilitating the transport of cargo to Montevideo port, Nunes said.
Improved conditions on the railway will allow trains to travel at 40km/h. The government eventually aims to repair more rail lines to reach this speed across the entire rail network, as poor conditions force trains to slow down to prevent accidents, according to Nunes.
A large portion of the network will be repaired under public-private partnerships (PPPs) once congress approves a bill regulating public-private investment, the official added.
AFE has a 3,000km rail network, of which 1,600km is currently operational.