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Nigerian govt budgets $1.9bn for rail project to Niger



The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, said on Sunday the Federal Government has budgeted $1.9billion for the Kano-Maradi (Niger Republic) rail project.

The minister, who disclosed this when he featured in a Channels TV programme, Politics Today, said the project would commence on Tuesday.

“The project is going to cost us $1.9bn and we will source it from mostly Europe,” he said.

When asked how long it will take the country to repay the loan, Amaechi explained that it is not within the jurisdiction of his ministry to make public the repayment plan.

“That is the responsibility of the Ministry of Finance. When we would pay; what are the terms of agreement for the loan and all that would be the responsibility of the Ministry of Finance,” the All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftain added.

READ ALSO: Why Nigeria is investing in railway, seaports — Amaechi

“So, that question can be directed to the Minister for Finance. For us in Transportation, our job is to work with the Ministry of Finance to procure the loan and commence construction and we think we would commence construction on Tuesday.”

The minister said the project would open up the country to more investment, arguing that it is for the best interest of Nigeria for the Kano-Maradi railway to be constructed.

“The interest is national; the interest is about Nigeria. The Maradi terminal is just 20 kilometres away from Nigeria; just 20 kilometres. So, there is no huge investment like Nigerians are thinking,” Amaechi concluded.

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