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Amaechi downplays GE’s withdrawal from railway concession deal



Amaechi downplays GE's withdrawal from railway concession deal

The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, Thursday, downplayed the effect of the withdrawal of General Electric (GE) from the consortium that won the country’s railway concession, saying Transnet SOC Limited is capable of leading the consortium and raising the $2.7 billion required.

The minister also denied insinuations that GE’s withdrawal maybe a set back for the ambitious railway expansion in the country during a visit the Apapa port end of the Lagos-Ibadan railway project.

The minister said: “I don’t know whether GE pulled out: GE is no longer into transportation. What happened is that it was a consortium; we have APM Terminals, Transnet, SinoHydro of China and GE.

Read also: GE hands over Nigeria rail concession deal to partner Transnet as it plans exiting transport business

“GE is the only one that is no longer into transportation business. So, Transnet has now taken the lead role as the head of the consortium. We are going ahead with the concession.

On the possible setback the concession may surfer, Amaechis said: “What setback is that? Transnet can raise the $2.7bn.”

It would be recalled that Bloomberg had reported on Wednesday that GE said it was withdrawing from the railway concession and handing it over to Transnet SOC Limited in line with its strategy to exit the transportation business.

GE won a contract last year to manage Nigeria’s narrow-gauge rail network in partnership with three other companies, namely SinoHydro of China, Transnet, and APM Terminals.

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