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The Ghanaian government has secured a $1 billion loan from China for railway refurbishment

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According to the Ghanaian Minister of Railways, Joe Ghartey, the government has signed two $500m agreements with their Chinese counterparts.

He said that the Western and Eastern rail lines totalling 930km, together with other railway projects will be undertaken with the new investment.

“Western and Eastern rail lines totalling 930km, as well as other railway projects will be undertaken with the new investment.”

A part of the funds will also be used to construct new railway lines from Tema to Akosombo.

He added that the government has ordered 30 trains which are capable of operating at a maximum speed of 160km per hour compared to the 120km per hour for the existing rolling stock. He said that the vehicles will be delivered soon.

He also explained that the government plans to use modernised signalling systems since the trains will require automated signals to operate.

The minister stated that railway lines built during the previous administration have largely deteriorated. Accordingly, the government plans to build more than 2,000km lines within eight years.

The Accra-Tema and Accra-Nsawam rail lines have already been rehabilitated as a part of the overall revamp of the rail system.

He added that the government intends to construct new railways to reduce vehicular traffic as well as time spent in travelling from one place to the other.

He revealed that the government has also paid all salary arrears to the railway employees. A 35% salary increase has also been approved by the government.