Ghana signs $500m agreement with China for continuation of new standard gauge

An agreement has been signed between the Ghana Railway Development Authority (GRDA) and China Railway Wuju Group Corporation, for the continuation of the development of a new Standard Gauge Western line.

The $500 million project would have both passenger and freight services.

Under the agreement, the Manso through Tarkwa to Dunkwa section of the line, which is approximately 100 kilometres would be developed.

The 22km-Kojokrom to Manso line was awarded to Messers Amandi in 2017 and is presently under construction.

A statement copied to the Ghana News Agency indicated that at the signing ceremony in Beijing, China, the Minister for Railways Development Mr. Joe Ghartey recounted the “sorry state” of the sector and moves by the government to restore hope and confidence in the railway sector.

“The British, who colonised the Gold Coast, now Ghana left behind an active railway network of 947km, which the present government is working hard to renovate ,add more lines and coaches to make the sector more viable despite the less than 100 km operational rail network”.

Mr Ghartey indicated that since the creation of the Ministry of Railways Development by President Akufo-Addo in 2017, it started various works on sections of the railway line.

The Sector Minister urged CRWJ to put in their best in order to attract more opportunities in building Ghana’s railway network.

Mr Ghartey further called on CRWJ to do its best to complete the first phase of the project within the one-year time frame as indicated in the Agreement.

The Vice President of CRWJ was grateful for the opportunity, describing the Contract to develop the Manso to Dunkwa section of the Western railway line as their biggest project in Ghana.

He assured the delegation that CRWJ would ensure that terms of the Agreement were complied with and fulfilled to the latter.

He added that the CRWJ would fully leverage its comprehensive strength and technical advantages to strengthen communication and bilateral ties between CR5 and the Government of Ghana to realise its vision of a modern railway network.

The CRWJ has been on the Ghanaian market since 2007.  It has six (6) subsidiaries presently conducting businesses in Ghana.

They include; CR3, CR5, CR7, CR10 and the China Railway Major Bridge Construction Group with over 1,500 local employees.

The CEO of the Ghana Railway Development Authority Mr. Richard Diedong Dombo signed the contract witnessed by Joe Ghartey, the sector Minister, Mr. Siisi Essuman-Ocran, the Chief Director of the Ministry of Railways Development and Mr Sylvester Williams a Chief State Attorney at the Attorney General’s office.

Also present were; Mr. Ebenezer Nartey, a Board member of Ghana Railway Company Limited (GRCL), Mr. Laadi Ayii Ayamba and Mr. Suhiyin Wahab Wumbei representatives of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Roads and Transport.

Earlier, the Ghanaian delegation visited CRWJ’s project site in Beijing to have first-hand information and exposures on their works.

Source: GNA

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