Since the Revolution, tensions have never completely disappeared, mainly in the south of the country (Gafsa, Gabes, Sfax, Tozeur …): Sit-in, protests, interruptions in production, blockages of phosphate railways and merchandise.
The National Company of Tunisian Railways (SNCFT) announced that the closing of the number 13 railway line for years between Sfax and Tozeur, following the multiplication of sit-ins, has caused enormous financial losses for the Company, with the cancellation of 8960 phosphate delivery operations.
Line 13, important for the transport of people and also phosphate, is still closed because of protests, despite several attempts to restore the situation. SNCFT called for additional efforts by the authorities concerned to unblock the situation and resume, as soon as possible, the activity on this line connecting Sfax to Tozeur.
Financial losses of 37 MD in 2017!
According to figures released on Wednesday, February 14, 2018, by the Ministry of Transport, sit-ins blocking rail traffic caused losses of around 37 million dinars (MD) in 2017.
The value of the shortfall increased from 8.556 MD in 2011 to 9.547 MD in 2017.
The number of protests on the railways reached in 2017 about 102, against only 46 in 2015, an evolution of 121.73%, resulting in the loss of thousands of working days.
According to the Transport Department, protest movements are still continuing in the Gafsa mining area, especially at line 13 linking Gafsa to Sfax, perceived as a vital link for the transport of phosphate, goods and products. people.
The company also recorded losses estimated at 14,076 MD due to the blockage of trains carrying phosphate in 2017 and the cancellation of 744 trips.
An estimated loss of 8,115 MD was recorded because of the cancellation of 709 trips. The value of the shortfall, with regard to the transport of goods in 2017, is estimated at 3,248 MD, an increase of 217,18% compared to the year 2015 (about 1,024 MD) whereas the loss to gain interurban transport is estimated at 2,129 MD.