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Nigeria Starts Construction On The Lagos-Ibadan Line




Following the approval of loan agreements between the government of Nigeria and the Export-Import Bank of China - reported by Railways AfricaTM in January of this year -  Nigeria’s acting president, Yemi Osinbajo, inaugurated construction works on the Lagos - Ibadan Railway Modernisation Project in an official launch ceremony held on 8 March.

The Nigerian Federal Government awarded the contract for construction works on the Lagos - Ibadan Modernisation Project to China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC) in August last year. Following two previously unsuccessful attempts to fund a new railway line between Abuja and Ibadan, one in 2006 and another in 2012, the federal government has opted for the current infrastructure to be modernised rather than building a wholly new line.

The project is expected to be complete by 2018 and will serve to improve railway services in the region to support trade and increase mobility between agricultural and city centres in Nigeria. Speaking at the launch ceremony, Osinbajo stated that: “The agricultural sector will receive a long-awaited boost, as this rail line will be a fast and convenient means of transporting farm produce from the hinterlands to the city, thereby increasing economic activity in these regions.”

In addition to the Lagos – Ibadan line, the Nigerian government has made provision to development of the Lagos - Calabar railway line in the 2017 budget, delivering on campaign promises to improve mobility and diversify the Nigerian economy in 2016/17.

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