Nigeria to Partner South Korea on Rail Sector Revival
The Federal Government has reiterated its commitment to the development of the railway as a veritable means of transportation across the country.
It said the development of modern railway infrastructures would ease the present over dependence on road as the main means of persons and goods movement across the country.
To this end, the central organ is ready to partner South Korea in the development of modern railway infrastructures through a public private partnership (PPP) arrangement.
Minister of Transport, Senator Idris Umar, disclosed this in Abuja while receiving in audience a Korean business delegation led by Korean Ambassador to Nigeria, H.E. Jong-Hyum Choi. Umar said continued partnership with the private sector would enable Nigeria develop its infrastructural facilities.
The minister, who was represented at the occasion by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Transport, Mr. Nebolisa Emodi, noted that investment opportunities abound in the transport sector, which is the key to the federal government’s transformation agenda.
He said that the ministry had developed a 25-year master plan for the construction of new standard gauge line as well as rehabilitation of the existing narrow gauge rail line.
He hailed the business delegation for the visit, even as he pointed that funds were the major constraint in the actualisation of the master plan, and called on foreign investors to partner the government in order to achieve government’s objective in the transport sector.
The Southern Korean Ambassador to Nigeria had earlier in his opening remarks explained that his mission to the ministry was to partner the federal government in the area of transportation, with particular reference to railway projects.
Choi stated that the Republic of South Korea was once a poor country without national endowment but has risen to become the world’s 10th largest economy through the development of human resources, especially in the infrastructure sector.
Also speaking, leader of the delegation, Mr. Park Min Wao, reiterated the interest of the Korean Rail in partnering Nigeria to develop rail infrastructure, because, according to him, there can be no meaningful infrastructural development without the active participation of the rail sector.
Wao stated that South Korea had invested in rail lines in different parts of the world and was prepared to assist Nigeria in realising her dream in the transport sector.