Finally ... although the revival of the coal mines will be bad news for the environment.

Joshua Howat Berger
MOZAMBIQUE REVIVES HISTORIC RAILWAY LINE
As the locomotive rolls into dusty Savane, children drop their games to chase the train and a colorful palette of vendors converges on the station.
The recently rebuilt Sena railroad has brought new life to this village in central Mozambique, 26 years after the original line was destroyed in the southern African country's bloody civil war.
"Soft drinks! Sweets! Bread! Peanuts!" yell the vendors, who sell all that and more from baskets perched on their heads.
They pass their goods up to the sea of hands clamouring from the windows above. A stream of cash passes down.
Mozambique goes to the polls Wednesday for its fourth general elections since a 1992 peace agreement that ended its 16-year civil war and ushered in multi-party democracy.
The vote will in part be a referendum on the job ruling party Frelimo has done rebuilding the country in the 17 years since.
The recovery has been steady but slow, as the story of the Sena
railroad attests.
Last November the rail line was partially reopened, the product of a six-year reconstruction project that followed a decade spent looking for funds.
National rail company CFM expects to reopen the full 673-kilometre line by late November this year.
When complete, the Sena line will provide a vital link from Moatize in the northwest -- where multinational companies recently began mining what are believed to be the world's largest reserves of high-quality coal, estimated at 2.4 billion tonnes -- and the central port city of Beira.
It will also restore a vital connection to the outside world in long-neglected places like Savane.
The Sena line was built in the early 20th century, when Mozambique was still a Portuguese colony.
The backbone of central Mozambique's rail network, it became a favorite target for the campaign of infrastructure attacks carried out by Renamo, the anti-Communist rebel group that waged war on Frelimo's Marxist-Leninist regime after independence from Portugal in 1975.
With sponsorship from white-ruled Rhodesia and apartheid South Africa, Renamo bombed rail bridges, attacked trains and lay mines along the tracks.
By the war's end, many sections of the line were mangled and useless. In other places trees grew through the tracks. Train stations in Savane and elsewhere were bombed-out shells.
"The line was completely destroyed," said Candido Jone, director of the reconstruction project.
"It was a reconstruction from zero."
Rebuilding has been a 220 million dollar project, funded partly by the World Bank and European Investment Bank and partly by private investors.
CFM says the project has been vital to restarting the economy.
For years Moatize's mines sat idle because there was no way to export the coal.
Jone credits the rebuilding of the Sena line with bringing in billions of dollars of investment from mining giants Vale, Riversdale and Coal India.
The line is also improving life in more everyday ways.
Abencoado Caetano is traveling home to Marromeu from Beira. The train ticket cost him five dollars -- half the price of the mini-bus.
"With that half, you can eat along the way," Caetano says.
"I'm traveling with children, so with that money I can buy bread, cake, even travel well."
Track-side vendors say they earn between four and fifteen dollars a day.
It's a lot in a country where 90 percent of the population still lives on less than two dollars a day.
As passengers lean out the train windows to bargain with the vendors below, Alexandre Luis, a native of the area who has come to say goodbye to a relative, watches the spectacle unfold.
"With this line, a lot of people manage to survive, said Luis.
Sapa-AFP