President Muhammed Buhari on Tuesday, flagged off the US$3.2 billion Port Harcourt to Maiduguri narrow gauge railway reconstruction project with new branch lines to Owerri, Imo State and Damaturu, Yobe State.
The project which is to be co-financed by loan from a syndicate of Chinese financiers with Federal Government contribution of 15% project cost, includes the Bonny Deepsea port and Railway Industrial park, Port Harcourt are being developed through direct investment by the conglomerate led Messrs CCECC Nigeria Limited with a total investment portfolio of US$3.2 billion.
President Buhari has however disclosed that the reconstruction of Port Harcourt-Maiduguri railway line is to be executed with 85 per cent loan with the federal government providing 15 per cent counterpart funding.
The president, who made this known on Tuesday at the virtual ground-breaking ceremony of three projects namely: the rehabilitation and reconstruction of Port Harcourt-Maiduguri Eastern Narrow Gauge railway project, Bonny deep sea port and Railway Industrial Park, Port Harcourt, also said the railway project when completed will reactivate the dormant economic activities on the Eastern corridor.
He said: “The funding of the railway is through loan to fund 85% project cost and the federal government contribution of 15% as counterpart funding.”
According to him, the rehabilitation of the Port Harcourt–Maiduguri railway line would reactivate economic activities along the Eastern corridor, which have been greatly affected by insecurity.