Minister of Transportation Rotimi Amaechi has said the Lagos-Ibadan rail project will be completed this year.
Amaechi said about $40 billion would be required to complete rail and sea port projects this year.
The minister, who disclosed this at the inauguration of additional locomotives and coaches at the Rigasa Station, Kaduna State, restated Federal Government commitment to implementing the project.
Speaking at the event, President Muhammadu Buhari also restated his commitment to link all commercial and production centres in the country via rail to develop the economy and promote national integration.
Amaechi said: “We have huge challenges we have to face but one assurance we will give Nigerians is that we will do everything possible to ensure we complete Lagos-Ibadan this year.
“We are negotiating with contractors and funders who will fund the project. If we are able to conclude the arrangements, taking into consideration Nigeria’s law, then, we will start both this year. That include Port Harcourt to Maiduguri, Kano to Jibia, Abuja to Baru, the sea port in Bonny, sea port in Warri and so many other projects.
“That’s why I said we will need between $36 and $40 billion. Only God knows where we are going to get it from.”
The minister lauded Buhari for his commitment to developing the sector and further pleaded for supports from the Finance Ministry.
The President said the new rail system would support and ease transportation in the country.
He restated his commitment to reviving the rail sector.
He called for stakeholders support especially from the National Assembly and lauded the transport minister for his hardwork on projects.