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05 August 2017

Over 200 investors interested in rail sector dev’t

More than 200 local and foreign investors have expressed interest in supporting the country develop its rail industry.

This is according to a deputy Railways Development Minister, Kwaku Agyenim Boateng.

He said the government will resort to what it calls “multiple financing approaches” to achieve its goal of revamping the rail sector.

In June this year, the government announced that it will need $7 billion dollars to revamp the sector but different groups including the minority in Parliament said the government was being over-ambitious.

“You are dealing with investors who want to invest. It could be Public Private Partnership, Government of Ghana, or Build Operate and Transfer. Rail investments are huge, so you have to be very innovative in funding such projects. We have received over 202 Letters of Interests. They want to engage the ministry in discussing funding arrangements for the various projects,” he said.

The New Patriotic Party (NPP) in its election 2016 manifesto said improving the rail industry was one of its key infrastructural plans.

It said it would construct an Eastern and Central rail line to improve transportation of goods between the north and the south.

The Eastern Railway line will “cover a distance of 330km and starts from Accra to Kumasi with a branch line from Achimota to Tema.”

The Minister for Finance, Ken Ofori Atta while presenting the 2017 budget statement said “when the line becomes operational, it will decongest the port and facilitate the movement of cargo and passengers to Kumasi and its environs. In 2017, the feasibility studies will be finalized and invite proposals from the private sector.”

On the Central Rail line, he said, he said it will “cover a distance of 200km and spans from Kotoku on the Eastern Line to Huni Valley on the Western Line. It will have a branch line from Achiase to Kade and we plan to undertake feasibility study on the line and extend it to Kibi.”

 

By: Jonas Nyabor/citifmonline.com/Ghana

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