Niger State Governor Pursues Railway Partnership with China

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Governor Umaru Bago of Niger State convened a meeting with a delegation from the China Railway Corporation in Minna, the state capital, signaling a significant step towards enhancing transportation infrastructure.

As disclosed by Abdullberqy Ebbo, the Special Adviser on Digital Communications, the meeting aimed to explore a potential partnership to establish a comprehensive railway network spanning Niger State’s three geopolitical zones and connecting to Abuja.

The delegation, representing the China Railway Corporation renowned for its extensive railway projects in China, engaged in discussions regarding collaboration across various sectors. This includes agricultural development, housing initiatives, and the construction of airline hangars, along with the Cango terminal at Bola Tinubu International Airport Minna.

The proposed partnership seeks to solidify business relations between Niger State and the China Railway Corporation. To this end, plans are underway to draft a Concept Note and a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) outlining the terms of collaboration.

Financing for the ambitious railway project is anticipated to be sourced from the China Exim Bank, underscoring China’s continued commitment to infrastructure development in Nigeria.

This initiative aligns with previous commitments by the Chinese government to support railway projects in Nigeria. Notably, in October 2023, China expressed its commitment to refinance and complete the Abuja-Kano and Port-Harcourt-Maiduguri railway projects.

Furthermore, in February 2024, Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, engaged in discussions with the China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation in Beijing to advance plans for rail projects in Lagos State.

The collaboration between Niger State and China reflects a strategic effort to enhance transportation infrastructure and drive economic growth, underscoring the importance of international partnerships in Nigeria’s development agenda.

Soukaina Sghir

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