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Report: FG mulls $14.4bn rail project funding from Standard Chartered to replace Chinese loan

Report: FG mulls $14.4bn rail project funding from Standard Chartered to replace Chinese loan
June 10
22:14 2021

Rotimi Amaechi, minister of transportation, says the federal government is discussing with Standard Chartered Plc to raise about $14.4 billion to fund two rail projects.

This, according to Amaechi, will replace the borrowing plan from China for the construction of Port Harcourt to Maiduguri and the Lagos-Ibadan-Kano rail lines.

Last year, the federal government had asked the national assembly to approve a $5.3 billion Chinese loan request to execute the Ibadan-Kano standard gauge rail line. The agreement with Chinese lenders generated controversies over ‘clauses conceding Nigeria’s sovereignty to China’.

During a panel with the house of representatives committee on treaties and agreements, Amaechi warned that China will not approve requests for loans if the national assembly continues to probe terms of contracts.


The new arrangement is expected to replace the earlier plans to source loans from Chinese banks. Bloomberg quoted Rotimi Amaechi, minister of transport, as said during a recent interview in Abuja.

The transport minister said Zainab Ahmed, minister of finance, budget and national planning, is “overseeing the talks with the emerging markets-focused financial institution about arranging the infrastructure loans.”

“We’ve moved away from China in some of our projects,” Amaechi said.


He said Standard Chartered Plc financing would fund the upgrade of the eastern rail line, a 1,443 km narrow gauge rail line spanning from Port Harcourt in the south-south zone to Maiduguri in the northeast zone and a new standard-gauge line on the coast.

Dayo Aderugbo, the bank’s spokesperson for West Africa, said the matter is confidential.


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