Business / Industries

Chinese firm trains Nigerians ahead of new railway's operation

(Xinhua) Updated: 2016-05-13 09:28

ABUJA - A Chinese firm undertaking the construction of Nigeria's first standard gauge railway has kicked off capacity building for local railway personnel ahead of the railway's commercial operation, the firm said on Thursday.

Xia Lijun, a project manager with China Railway Construction Corporation (CRCC), said the operational training for more than 100 personnel of the Nigeria Railway Corporation (NRC) became imperative since it was the first time Nigeria was operating standard gauge.

According to Xia, the construction of he 186.5 km Abuja-Kaduna railway was near completion, and the Nigerian trainees at the CRCC institute were in high-spirit to exercise their newly acquired skills in railway operation.

Ayeni Adekunle, a director at the NRC who is getting training at CRCC institute, said he and his colleagues have been introduced to the latest technology in commercial railway operation.

"We are being exposed to a lot of machines that will be used on the standard gauge. I want to say that it is noble and also innovative; we are happy for it," he said.

The Abuja-Kaduna rail line is one of the first Standard Gauge Railway Modernization Projects (SGRMP)in Nigeria.

With a design speed of 150 km per hour, the railway will reduce, upon completion, the travel time between the Nigerian capital and the northwestern state of Kaduna, to one hour, and each passenger train can carry up to 5,000 commuters.

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