The Nigerian government is currently negotiating a fresh $14.4 billion loan which is about N5.9 trillion to help finance two rail lines in the nation.
Rotimi Amaechi, who is the minister of transportation said this in an interview with Bloomberg.
According to Amaechi, Standard Chartered Plc, a British multinational bank will fund the project despite previously announcing the state-owned Export-Import Bank of China.
The rail projects include the upgrade of eastern line that links Port Harcourt with Maiduguri and the extension of the Lagos-Ibadan rail line to Kano.
“We’ve moved away from China in some of our projects,” the minister was quoted as saying by Bloomberg.
He added that the minister of finance, budget and national planning Zainab Ahmed is following up the talks with the emerging markets-focused financial institution on how to arrange the infrastructure loans.”
Buhari had announced in 2017 that the Export-Import Bank of China owned by the state “would shortly approve” a $3.5 billion loan to assist in building the 1,400-kilometer (870-mile) standard-gauge line.
It is a known fact that the Nigeria’s decision not to borrow from China was made in order to limit the country from been vulnerable to China.
The China Eximbank made available a total loan of about $2.3 billion for the standard-gauge railway segments that connects Abuja to Kaduna, and another one which will link Lagos to the city of Ibadan, as well as a metro line in Abuja.
China also contributed $5.3 billion to allow CCECC to expand the Lagos-Ibadan line to the northern commercial center of Kano, but as at January, the former Rivers Sate Governor stated that the financing has been received.