TAZARA links the Southern African regional transport network to East Africa and the rest of the world through the East African seaport of Dar es Salaam. It runs from the port of Dar-es-Salaam in Tanzania to the Town of Kapiri Mposhi in Central Zambia where it links with the existing Zambia Railways system.
The gauge of the line is 1,067 millimetres (three and half feet), also known as the “Cape Gauge”. The gauge of the TAZARA line is the same as that of Zambia Railways and all the other main trunk lines in Central and Southern Africa, which were all part of the grand plan by colonialist businessman Cecil Rhodes who envisioned building a rail link from Cape Town in South Africa to Cairo in Egypt. In 1998, a private transshipment hub was built at Kidatu in Southern Tanzania to connect the metre-gauge Central Line (Tanzania) with the Cape gauge TAZARA line. Kapiri-Mposhi enables road and railway inter-connectivity to other parts of Zambia, to the rest of Southern Africa in the south and to the mineral-rich Democratic Republic of Congo in the north.