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Nigerian govt signs MoU for $15bn rail project in Niger Delta



Atlanta Global Resources Inc. of the United States and the Federal Government, acting through the Ministry of the Niger Delta, have agreed to collaborate on a $15 billion rail project that would cross all nine Niger Delta states.

The agreement was signed on Tuesday at the Rewind to Rebirth NDDC Public-Private Partnership Summit in Lagos.

The PPP effort, according to the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Umana Umana, who spoke at the occasion, is intended to draw in international and private investors to help finance the enormous developmental challenges in the Niger Delta.

The Minister noted that the PPP was a component of an action plan to reposition the NDDC, adding that he inherited a “very messy situation.”

The minister said that there was a solid plan in place for the Niger Delta to maximise the advantages of its enormous natural resources, particularly oil and gas, which had made a substantial contribution to the national economy and development.

READ ALSO:Nigerian govt explains why work on $1.96bn Maiduguri-Port Harcourt rail project was stalled

Umana also bemoaned the region’s many problems, which included underdevelopment, poverty, unemployment, and environmental deterioration.

“The Federal Government recognises the need to address these challenges and to ensure that the people of the Niger Delta enjoy the benefits of their resources and potential. That is why the government established the Niger Delta Development Commission in 2000 with the sole mandate of facilitating the region’s rapid, even, and sustainable development.

“In this regard, the NDDC has been implementing various projects and programmes in sectors such as health, education, agriculture, the environment, youth empowerment, transportation and social welfare. In the process, the commission has delivered quality roads, bridges, schools, hospitals, water supply schemes, electrification projects, skill acquisition centres, agricultural inputs and equipment, waste management facilities, and scholarships.”

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