Modal Choice between Rail and Road Transportation: Evidence from Tanzania

28 Pages Posted: 31 Aug 2017 Last revised: 30 Apr 2018

See all articles by Atsushi Iimi

Atsushi Iimi

International Monetary Fund (IMF); World Bank

Richard Martin Humphreys

Independent

Yonas Eliesikia Mchomvu

World Bank

Date Written: August 29, 2017

Abstract

Rail transport generally has the advantage for large-volume long-haul freight operations. The literature generally shows that shipping distance, costs, and reliability are among the most important determinants of people's modal choice among road, rail, air, and coastal shipping transport. However, there is little evidence in Africa, although the region historically possesses significant rail assets. Currently, Africa's rail transport faces intense competition against truck transportation. With firm-level data, this paper examines shippers' modal choice in Tanzania. The traditional multinomial logit and McFadden?s choice models were estimated. The paper shows that rail prices and shipping distance and volume are important determinants of firms' mode choice. The analysis also finds that the firms' modal choice depends on the type of transactions. Rail transport is more often used for international trading purposes. Exporters and importers are key customers for restoring rail freight operations. Rail operating speed does not seem to have an unambiguous effect on firms' modal selection.

Keywords: Transport Services, Railways Transport, Multi Modal Transport

Suggested Citation

Iimi, Atsushi and Humphreys, Richard Martin and Mchomvu, Yonas Eliesikia, Modal Choice between Rail and Road Transportation: Evidence from Tanzania (August 29, 2017). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 8174. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3029855

Atsushi Iimi (Contact Author)

International Monetary Fund (IMF)

700 19th Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20431
United States

World Bank ( email )

1818 H Street NW
Washington, DC 20433
United States

Richard Martin Humphreys

Independent

No Address Available

Yonas Eliesikia Mchomvu

World Bank

1818 H Street, NW
Washington, DC 20433
United States

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