Rail transport in Madagascar

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1000 mm railways in Madagascar

Rail transport in Madagascar is primarily operated by Madarail. There are two unconnected systems having a total length of 875 km (544 mi), as of 2006, all metre gauge, 1.000 m (3 ft 3 38 in). The northern railway (TCE, Tananarive–Côte Est) is currently concessioned to Madarail. The southern line, Fianarantsoa-Côte-Est railway (FCE), is a parastatal (state owned) line.


Construction started in 1901 on the Madagascar Railway (Le Chemin-de-Fer de Madagascar) from Tananarive to Ambatolampy. The full line was completed from Tananarive to Antsirabé in 1923.[1]


There is a regular (at least daily) goods traffic between the port city of Toamasina and the capital city of Antananarivo. There are daily passenger trains[2] on the Madarail system. Very occasionally there are special chartered trips on restored Micheline railcars for tourists. The southern line has a regular daily passenger train, which provides a slow but picturesque alternative to the recently rehabilitated road in the region.


Cities served by rail[edit]

Expansion plans[edit]

Talks are going for extending Madagascar Railway operated by Madarail. The Malagasy Government signed[when?] a pact with Indian Railways & South African Railways to extend their railway services up to Antsiranana, Antalaha & Andapa in the north, up to Mahajanga & Maintirano in the west. Again southwest, south & southeastern extension of Fianarantsoa - Manakara Railway Line up to Morondova, Morombe, Toliara & Tolanaro is being planned. After extension, the length of the Madagascar Railway operated by Madarail will stand at 6,768 km (4,205 mi) connecting all of Madagascar.

See also[edit]



  1. ^ "Commerce Reports". Bureau of Foreign and Domestic Commerce, Department of Commerce. February 18, 1924 – via Google Books.
  2. ^ "MADARAIL - TRAIN VOYAGEUR" (in French). Archived from the original on 2018-06-12.
  3. ^ RailwaysAfrica 1/2008 FCover

Further reading[edit]

  • Robinson, Neil (2009). World Rail Atlas and Historical Summary. Volume 7: North, East and Central Africa. Barnsley, UK: World Rail Atlas Ltd. ISBN 978-954-92184-3-5.

External links[edit]