Ghana’s parliament approves US$707m Deutsche Bank loan for Western railway lines

GHANAGhana’s parliament has approved a total of €598.7 million loan (US$707 million) agreement between the Government and the Deutsche Bank to finance the construction of sections of the Western railway lines.

According to a report by Ghana Web the loan agreement will provide funding for the proposed construction of the Standard Gauge from Takoradi Port to Huni Valley.

The loan comprises a facility agreement of €523 million (US$617.63 million) and a Commercial Loan of €75. 657 million (US$89.35 million) between the Government of Ghana and the Deutsche Bank.

Additionally, the House also approved a request for waiver of import duties, import VAT, and other levies amounting to €72. 3 million on project materials and equipment to be imported for the execution of the project.

The loan for Ghana’s railway infrastructure has availability period of four years, at interest rate of CIRR+ 0.2 per cent per annum.

Also, the terms and conditions of the Commercial Loan include the facility amount of €75.7 million out of which €68 million is to finance the project and €7.7 million for the upfront fees and legal fees.

According to Dr Mark Assibey-Yeboah, the Chairman of the Finance Committee, scope of works includes the construction of approximately eight kilometres of standard gauge railway tracks.

The tracks connect the existing convertible narrow-gauge tracks from Takoradi to the Takoradi Port for easy and efficient access for cargo handling.

Dr, Assibey-Yeboah said the conversion of the 10.6km convertible narrow- gauge tracks to standard gauge would include conversion works and materials required a well as the supply of 10 new standard gauge turnouts.

He further noted that the construction of the new standard gauge railway line from Manso to Huni Valley would comprise of 70km of single-track lines.

This would include a 10km of double loop lines to improve access to express trains and give priority to passengers over cargo.

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