Construction of Abuja-Kaduna Standard gauge rail line, expected to be completed end of this year, is now 85% complete. The ministry of transport has said it has managed construction of 155km out of the expected 187.5km rail line stretch. The railway line has been under construction for two years now.
During a 2014 Ministerial Press briefing in Abunja, the Minister of Transport, Senator Idiris Umar gave a briefing on ministry’s (and related agencies) programmes and projects.
The project is being funded by the China Exim Bank at a cost of US$500m. He further revealed that construction and rehabilitation of the 274km Itakpe-Ajaokuta-Warri standard gauge rail line is expected to end by the second quarter of 2015. The project is being executed by Julius Berger at a cost of US$9.75bn.
Another project, Lagos-Ibadan standard gauge (double track) 2 x 180km, whose contracts have been awarded, will start soon according to the minister. The construction will begin when funds for the project have been arranged. The ministry has awarded contracts for a total 1,796 km in rail lines to take a total cost of US$ 9.76bn.
CCECC Nig. Ltd has been awarded the contract project of the 180km stretch Lagos-Ibadan standard gauge and the Lagos-Kano modernization rail project at an outlay of US$1.53bn and US$8.3bn respectively. At present, US$257.4m has already been paid by the federal government for the expense of these projects.
The main target in connecting the six geopolitical zones via speed rails is to make transportation of persons and goods easier and less hectic, since the number of passengers’ conveyed by rail line increased from 4,155,988 in 2012 to 4,328,789 in 2013 with a projection of over 5,000,000 passengers by the end of 2014. The planned construction of Abunja-Kaduna railway was set to be complete this year.