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Again, Buhari Travels To South Africa For China/Africa Forum


President Muhammadu Buhari will leave Nigeria Thursday for South Africa, to participate in the Forum on China/Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) taking place in Johannesburg, between December 4 and 5, 2015.

Buhari at the forum, will follow up his meeting with the Chinese leader Xi Jinping which took place on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly meeting in November in New York.

SSA on Media and Publicity to Mr. President, Garba shehu, said Buhari had indicated to the Chinese leader at the bilateral meeting in New York, that he wanted the Asian country to re-commence the stalled rail projects under new terms that would see China providing nearly all the financing required.

Shehu added that of particular interest was the coastal railway project stretching up to 1,402 kilometers linking Lagos in the West with Calabar in the East. The project has been estimated to gulp a whopping $12 billion – Chinese loan and which is expected to create about 200,000 jobs.

Another rail project that would be up for renegotiation the Presidential Spokesman pointed out is the $8.3bn Lagos-Kano standard gauge modernization project, of which only a segment, Kaduna-Abuja has reached completion stage.

President Buhari is also expected to discuss ways of removing all obstacles in the way of the 3,050 MW Mambila Power Station, considered a strategic project which was conceived in 1982 but has not taken off.

The Chinese President had informed President Buhari of the willingness of his country to finance the whole project through a special loan agreement.

The President, will be accompanied by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyema; Chubuike Amaechi (Transportation) and Okechukwu Enelamah (Trade, Industry and Investment). He is expected back to Abuja on Saturday, December 5.

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