(Xinhua/Ding Ting) (mp)
JOHANNESBURG - Nigeria needs at least $2billion (R23bn) in order to revive the Lagos-Kano railway line as part of efforts to boost local and international trade along the Northern and Southern zones.

Construction Review this week quoted Professor Yemi Osinbajo, Nigeria’s vice-president, as saying General Electric (GE) is “proposing to invest almost $2bn to ensure that the rail route is effective for movement of cargo from Apapa port to Kano”.

Speaking during the opening of the inaugural edition of the Lagos-Kano Economic and Investment Summit held at the Jubilee Chalets in Epe, Lagos, Osinbajo said: “I believe that Lagos and Kano states have by this collaboration underscored the cornerstone of the federal government's economic recovery and growth plan, namely the leveraging of synergies among states and between the government and the private sector.”

Nigeria’s federal government, in partnership with GE, is proposing to invest in the project to enhance the movement of cargo from Apapa ports to Kano via the rail line.

Osinbajo commended Lagos and Kano state governors for creating a platform to collaborate for economic growth.

The vice-president said he was optimistic such initiatives would open up the investment opportunities that would benefit both states.

Two years ago, the American firm GE confirmed it had a “keen interest” in acquiring a Nigeria railway concession project.

The completion of Nigeria’s railway projects will cost an estimated $46bn.

Nigeria has about 3500km of ageing railway lines, mostly built by the British before independence in 1960. 

- African News Agency (ANA)