Accra requests Chinese funds to upgrade rail network

The Investment and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) is to provide Ghana with a loan of $900 million for the rehabilitation of the country’s Eastern Rail lines; Accra to Nsawam (north of the capital) and from Achimota in the greater Accra area to Tema further up the coast.

A separate loan of $1.95 billion is awaiting approval from the Exim Bank of China for upgrading works on the Central line from Nsawam to Kumasi in central Ghana.

The Ghana Railway Development Authority (GRDA) said that $500 million would be designated for rehabilitation works on the Western Rail line.

Currently all in poor condition, the rehabilitation works on the Western, Central and Eastern lines would include bridges, signals and telecommunication systems. However the main upgrading would be centred on the tracks, with the gauges being upgraded from 10.67 mm to the standard 14.35 mm.

As well as enabling the speed of trains to increase from 57 to 180 km per hour, the new gauge tracks would allow neighbouring countries to link to Ghana's updated rail network.