Nigeria-Niger (Kano-Maradi) Railway Line Construction Project Updates

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The 25 kilometers Kano-Maradi railway will that run from the Nigerian border town of Jibiya to Maradi connecting the three northern Nigerian states of Kano, Jigawa, and Katsina, as well as traversing the border between the two nations, is expected to start operating in May 2023 before the end of Nigeria’s president, Muhammadu Buhari’s term.

The train project, which is valued at $1.8 billion, has the potential to change the economic outlook of northern Nigeria and the larger Sahara region. Nigeria took the initiative of constructing a rail link between Nigeria and Niger. While the original aim was to enhance Nigeria’s Lakaji Corridor, which runs from Lagos-Kano-Jibiya, officials took on the proposal and suggested linking Jibiya to Maradi.

Niger is a landlocked country that relies heavily on its southern coastline neighbors for foreign trade. Nigeria is attempting to offer Niger an alternate route that would allow its neighbor to transfer freight traffic away from the present Niamey-Dosso-Parakou-Cotonou axis and onto the Nigerian corridor. While the route would be more effective for products coming from southern Niger, customs offices and warehouses at a Maradi dry port would make the route competitive for logistics across a much greater region.

According to Amaechi, the rail line, which transports both people and freight, has its own power and water supply system, a GSM communication system, freight yards, rolling stock depots, and maintenance facilities.

The World Bank concluded in 2018 that the railway’s efficiency would generate $1.3 billion in annual income throughout the area.

Kano-Maradi railway funding

It is said that Nigeria chose to fully fund the Kano-Maradi railway project without requiring Niger to make any financial contributions. Niger appears to have embraced the initiative after its own national railway network was abandoned following its inauguration in 2014.

Following a meeting between Niger President Mohamed Bazoum and Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari, the Niger President stated that the project is an infrastructure that will unite the economies of Nigeria and Niger.

With the intention of promoting regional and international commerce, road projects connecting Kano and other northern Nigerian towns such as Katsina and Maiduguri will boost connectivity, and dry ports are being built throughout the region.

Reported earlier

Jan 2021

Contract for Construction of Kano-Maradi & Kano-Dutse Railway Line Awarded

The contract was awarded to Mota-Engil Group, a multinational organization headquartered in Portugal with operations focused on construction and infrastructure management in the segments of Engineering and Construction, Environment and Services, Transport Concessions, Energy, and Mining.

An overview of the project

This project involves the construction of a standard gauge railway line with an alignment of about 377 kilometers from Kano to Maradi and a branch line from Kano to Dutse.

The 284-kilometer Kano-Maradi railway line will connect three federal states in Northern Nigeria (Kano, Jigawa, and Katsina), and the Maradi,  the second-largest city in the Republic of Niger, while the 93 kilometers branch line will connect the capital of Jigawa’s State, known as Dutse, to Kano.

According to Amaechi, the contractor has also agreed to build a University as part of their corporate social responsibility (CSR) while working on the project.

Benefits of the project

Kano-Maradi & Kano-Dutse railway line project is expected to encourage economic development through the ease of access to goods and services, facilitate the transport of raw materials and manufactured goods, and create employment opportunities for a wide range of personnel.

Moreover, the rail line and its ancillary facilities will create conditions for the growth of existing businesses and industrial facilities, internal and external trades, and country integration.

In general, the new railway line will impact a population of approximately 8.8 million people
with many positive social and economic effects.

Feb 2021

Nigeria-Niger (Kano-Maradi) Railway line construction begins

Mota-Engil SGPS SA, a Portuguese group in the sectors of civil construction, public works, port operations, waste, water, and logistics, has begun constructing the US$ 1.8bn Nigeria-Niger Railway (Kano-Maradi railway) line.

This comes barely a month after Rotimi Amaechi, the Transport Minister in the Federal Republic of Nigeria announced the conclusion of a contract with the Portuguese group on the 283-kilometer line that runs from the northern trading hub of Kano to the town of Maradi on the other side of the Nigeria-Niger border.

Also Read: Nigeria to concession 12 roads under Highway Development and Management Initiative

The groundbreaking ceremony was held on the 9th of February this year at the site of a proposed station in Makira town, Katsina state.

Scope of the project

This project involves the construction of a standard gauge railway line with an alignment of about 377 kilometers from Kano to Maradi and a branch line from Kano to Dutse.

The 284-kilometer Kano-Maradi railway line will connect three federal states in Northern Nigeria (Kano, Jigawa, and Katsina), and Maradi,  the second-largest city in the Republic of Niger, while the 93 kilometers branch line will connect the capital of Jigawa’s State, known as Dutse, to Kano.

To be completed by 2023 according to Minister Amaechi, the entire line has a total of 15 stations, and its daily traffic forecast is 9,364 passengers & approximately 3000 metric tons of cargo.

The contractor will also build a Multi-disciplinary University in Rivers State as part of their corporate social responsibility (CSR).

Benefits of the project to Nigeria

According to President Muhammadu Buhari, the Kano- Maradi railroad, will amongst other benefits, create revenue for Nigeria, and enable the people of the Niger Republic to enjoy affordable transportation.

“The project, when completed, would serve import and export of goods for the Niger Republic and other countries in the sub-region through the Nigerian ports. The country will therefore earn revenue through expansion of trade and commerce, while the people of Niger Republic will benefit from the ease of transportation and logistics at an affordable cost in their import and export business,” the president said.

The federal government of Nigeria through the Ministry of Transport has awarded the contract for the implementation of the Kano-Maradi & Kano-Dutse railway line project which will connect the republic of Nigeria to the neighboring republic of Niger.

Also Read: Reconstruction of Abuja-Kaduna-Kano road, Nigeria, to be completed in 2023

The revelation was made by Rotimi Amaechi, Nigeria’s transportation minister in a tweet that read, “Today, (11th Jan 2021) we signed the contract documents for the commencement of the Kano-Maradi, Kano-Dutse railway project.”

Jul 2021

Construction of Kano-Kaduna railway line in Nigeria flagged off

The Federal government of Nigeria, led by President Muhammadu Buhari, recently flagged off the construction of the Kano – Kaduna railway line in a ceremony held by China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC), the project contractor, in Kano.

The ceremony was attended by Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi-the Federal Minister of Transportation, Abdullah Umar Ganduje-the governor of Kano State, Alhassan Musa Ibrahim-the chairman of Nigeria Railway Corporation, and Mr. Cui Jianchun-the Chinese ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. Jiang Yigao-the CCECC chairman, and Zhang Zhichen- the CCECC general manager.

According to Muhammadu Buhari, the groundbreaking ceremony for the Kano – Kaduna railway line project, which is a part of the Lagos – Kano railway modernization project, signifies an important milestone in the construction of the third segment of the latter whose first segment Abuja – Kaduna railway, and the second segment Lagos – Ibadan railway, are already complete and operational.

About the Kano – Kaduna railway

Spanning over a distance of 1343km, the Kano – Kaduna railway is expected to be completed in a period of 18 months upon which it will link the Lagos – Ibadan railway project and the Kano – Maradi project.

These links will allow Nigerians to traverse Abuja and Kano via Kaduna with relative ease and make the ports in Lagos, the choice for import and export business of the people of the landlocked Republic of Niger, therefore, boosting trade between the two West African countries.

Also Read: Sudan railway network to get US$ 643M revamp

“The project will with no doubt improve the standard of living of citizens within its corridor, create employment and promote trade, and in the long term help decongest the Lagos Port Complex and increase its efficiency as well as further increase the viability of the Inland Dry Ports located in Ibadan, Kaduna, and Kano,” said Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi.

May 2023

Fleet contract approved for Kano – Maradi line in Nigeria

The Federal Executive Council (FEC) of Nigeria has approved a contract worth Naira 453.9 billion ($984.7 million) for the supply of rolling stock and operational equipment for the Kano-Maradi railway line.

The 284km standard-gauge line is currently under construction and will connect Kano in Nigeria with Maradi in Niger.

The Nigerian Railways Corporation (NRC) sought approval from the FEC to award the contract to the company responsible for building the line.

The contract is expected to be completed within four years. The Kano-Maradi line is being designed and constructed by Portuguese firm Mota-Engil, which was awarded the contract by the Nigerian government in January 2021.

The project, with a total cost of $1.96 billion, includes financing arrangements. The line will have 15 stations and is projected to initially handle 9,364 passengers and 3,000 tonnes of freight per day.

1 thought on “Nigeria-Niger (Kano-Maradi) Railway Line Construction Project Updates”

  1. Dear,
    Thank you for writing this interrested article on Kano to Maradi railway project. By this project an other was born in Maradi town at the terminal of the Kano-Maradi rail-line, I mean The Maradi Dry Port Project. I wil share with you soon pictures and somes datas of this new project.

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