June 18, 2024

FG inaugurates Port Harcourt-Aba rail line

The Federal Government inaugurated commercial train operations along the Port Harcourt-Aba rail line on Tuesday for public use.

During the inauguration at the railway station in Port Harcourt, the Minister of Transportation, Said Alkali, launched commercial services along the 62-kilometre Port-Harcourt-Aba corridor.

Alkali highlighted that the event was part of the Federal Government’s efforts to boost trade, improve mobility, and ensure connectivity between southern and northeastern Nigeria.

According to the minister, the rehabilitation project was contracted to China Civil Engineering and Construction Company by the Federal Ministry of Transportation with an expected completion time of 36 months.

The minister stated: “It is worthy to note that the scope of the project covers the rehabilitation of the existing narrow gauge railway line, the construction of new modern stations, and the procurement of new modern rolling stock.

“This railway line will also link the ports of Onne, Bonny, and Port Harcourt to facilitate the evacuation of goods and other freight through the Eastern Corridor.

“The Federal Government, in the contractual agreement, is to provide 15 per cent of the direct construction cost, inclusive of land acquisition and value-added tax, while a bank loan through direct construction cost is to cover 85 per cent of the project.”

He said the commencement of operations of the rail line will boost economic activities between the South-South and South-East regions of the country, pending the completion of the other sections of the project.

“With the completion of the rehabilitation of the Port-Harcourt to Aba rail corridor, the Ministry will continue to vigorously drive CCECC towards the speedy completion and delivery of the 181-kilometre Aba-Enugu stretch.

“Commencement of operations on this stretch of the project aligns with priority five of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s Presidential Priority Areas, which identify enhanced infrastructure and transportation as enablers of growth for the economy,” he said.

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