CEM REPORT TRANSPORTATION | The Kaduna-Kano railway modernisation project has received a new sponsor after the previous financier backed off.
The new financier the China Development Bank (CDB) took over after the senate harmonized the 2016-2018 Federal Government’s external borrowing plan for the project.
Announcing the new financier of the project the Senate said the National Assembly had approved a $22.8 billion loan for the modernisation of the Kaduna-Kano railway project in 2020.
The Senate added that the loan request came at the request of the Ministry of Finance for modifications to the financing proposal for the Nigerian Railway Modernisation Project (Kaduna-Kano segment).
Explaining the reason for a new financier, the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan said the previous financier pull out as a result of COVID.
“This was occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic whereof China Exim Bank withdrew its support to finance the project.’’
“To secure funds for the project, the contractor, the Chinese Construction Engineering Company (CCEC) Nigeria Ltd., and the Federal Ministry of Transportation, engaged the CDB as the new financier for 973.5 million dollars.’’
Lawan also revealed that the National Assembly approved the loan under the 2016-2018 Medium Term External Borrowing (Rolling) plan.
Meanwhile, Sen. Jibrin Isa raised the question of a disparity between the initial $22.7 billion and the $ 973.5 million. He queried if any disbursement was made out of the initial $22.7 billion.
Laying to rest his observations, the Chairman, of the Senate Committee on Local and Foreign Debts, Sen. Clifford Ordia cleared that;
“The submission of 22.7 billion dollars was in respect of five projects under the 2016-2018 external borrowing plan.
“Incidentally some of the other projects were approved apart from the project that has to do with the Kaduna-Kano segment.
“The financier declined to finance the project, so the CCEC Nigeria Ltd., in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Transportation had to look for a contractor to finance the segment of the rolling plan.’’