Nigerians commends CHEC, China Exim Bank for Abuja-Keffi- Akwanga- Makurdi road

Under the Belt and Road Initiative, Chinese Exim Bank has given concessionary loans for the development of key infrastructural projects in Nigeria.

These funds have endeared massive investments in roads, bridges, and railway lines across Africa. These infrastructure has helped connectivity and given a boost to local economies and businesses.

The recent completion of the dualisation and expansion of the Abuja, Keffi- Akwanga- Lafia- Makurdi road, is a major project financed by China Exim Bank

The road which is a major artery running throught the middle belt of Nigeria was completed by China Habour Engineering Company CHEC, giving a major lifeline to road users and residents on the road corridor.

The $532 billion road project was funded through a facility from the Exim bank of China which provided 85 person of the facility While the Nigerian government provided 15 percent as counterpart funding.

Speaking on the scope of work done and successful completion of the road, with journalists in Abuja the Managing Director of China Habor Engineering Company Wang Jason noted that the implementation of the reconstruction and expansion of the road has significantly improve the road traffic capacity and service level, shortening it from the original 7 hours to 4.5 hours from Abuja to Makurdi.

” It has greatly shortening the travel time of road users thereby making it more convenient for residents along the route. the linkage between the capital Abuja and the towns along the route is now smoother, and the connections between the states along the route is better . At the same time, it has significantly reduce transportation costs, improve the efficiency of cargo circulation, promote the flow of goods and people along the route, commercial activities and trade development, and promote economic development along the route”.

Emmanul Ogbu, a commercial driver who has plied the route for over a decade, who spoke with our correspondent said the construction and expansion of the road has greatly improves his revenue, as he can now do more then one trip between Abuja and Lafia in a day compared to before when he could only do when trip as a result of the bad road.

” China Habour Engineering and the financial of this project, the Exim Bank of China must be commended for this project at least we can see what the loan facility was used for, it has opened opportunities for people like us to be able to take care of our families because of the increase in business activities and increased income”.

Also speaking on the development , Prof Ghali Ibrahim, Head of Political Science and International Relations, University of Abuja noted that the speedy construction of the road within contractual time frame was as a result of the concessionary loan made available by China Exim Bank.

“It is actually embracing for China to charge us 1.5 percent interest rate and also grant us generous moratorium of up to ten years and you have almost twenty to thirty years of repayment period, If that should be the case we ask China Exim bank to continue financing such projects all over Nigeria in all nooks and crannies , why because we need infrastructure because we have infrastructure deficit so with people like the Chinese, with companies like China Habour, with financiers like the Exim bank of China, we will continue to say “Jiayou” meaning such engagement should continue”.

In the last decade, China and African nations have deepened economic and political ties based on mutual trust and understanding. Both sides have made concerted efforts in building the Belt and Road Initiative and forging closer ties in building a China-Africa community with a shared future.

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Ihesiulo Grace

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