Source: citifmonline.com - The Deputy Transport Minister, Joyce Bawa Mogtari has revealed that government will require about one billion dollars (USD1billion) to improve Ghana’s railway sector.
The Deputy Minister, who was speaking on the Citi Breakfast Show, says although government values the contribution of the railway sector to the country’s economic development, it has struggled to secure the requisite funding to fully implement some of the plans outlined to develop the sector.
“What has happened is that over the years, since 2008 to be specific, the railway sector has actually been declining because we haven’t put in the requisite investment and that is really the problem. It is not because we believe that railways are not a priority. It has actually been high on the agenda to see to the development of the railway sector,” she stated.
“What has been challenging presently is the funding we require… at least we need money in the region of almost 1 billion dollars to fully implement the system plan that we have and that is a huge sum of money under the present conditions.” she stated.
Mrs. Mogtari, however, indicated that government is currently in talks with some investors over the railways sector.
“We are actually in talks with several prospective investors, but because of the quantum of investment required, most investors would require that the government will be providing so much in funds and they will be able to create the comfort they require from these people…presently, we are actually working on several other infrastructural projects and that makes it difficult to invest fully in the railway sector,” She noted.
Meanwhile, Mrs. Joyce Mogtari is optimistic that with the provision of the requisite funding, the transport ministry will implement the master plan for Ghana’s railway sector.
Ghana’s railway sector is currently facing serious challenges which some believe when addressed, can propel economic development.
At present, some of the functional railways include, the Accra-Nsawam railway.
Also, work is ongoing to revamp the Sekondi-Takoradi railway line while the Transport Ministry is also seeking private support to develop the Accra-Kumasi railway as well as linking it to the Boankra inland port.
Measures are also being put in place to connect the new Free Zones enclave to the Tema port.
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