Nigeria’s Rail Sector Sustained Freight Growth Projected At 7.9%, 2021 – 2025

The Federal Government said the reason it wants to unbundle the commercial operation of the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) is to improve its operations and improve capacity especially for freight operations and boost the private sector role.

This was disclosed by the Minister of State for Transportation, Sen. Gbemisola Saraki, at the Nigeria International Partnership Forum in Paris.

In a meeting with potential foreign investors, she stated that the unbundling will ensure competition in the space and improve service delivery, urging investors to explore investment in the sector, as the FG plans to unbundle the NRC into 4 categories.

She stated that the NRC would be unbundled into four subsidiaries, including Regulatory, Infrastructure (network creation, upgrade and maintenance) Operations and Services (the rolling stock operations, rolling stock creation and procurement and rolling stock maintenance).

There have been renewed commitments to railway transport as a key component for socio-economic transformation.

“Of note is the 25-year strategic plan targeted at the rehabilitation of all the existing narrow gauge rail lines, construction of new standard gauge lines and connection to all seaports.

“There are also connections to state capitals, mining and agricultural clusters and technological hubs by rail, as well as their operation and maintenance in the country.

“This has led to some success stories such as the commissioning of the Abuja-Kaduna, Warri–Itakpe and the Lagos-Ibadan rail lines, as well as the wagon assembly plant in Ogun State,” she said.

She added that Nigeria’s rail projects have the capacity to generate a sustained freight growth of 7.9 per cent from 2021 to 2025.

It was reported recently that the Federal Government revealed it has completed 700km of railway currently operational nationwide.

This was disclosed by the Minister of Transportation, Mr Rotimi Amaechi, He added that the mileage was about 5000km to 6000km, which the present administration planned to embark upon, citing the Abuja-Kaduna railway, the Itape-Warri and the Lagos-Ibadan as the projects that had been completed.

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