Kenya seeks for another funds to complete stage three of the standard gauge railway.
Kenya is seeking for fund from China to complete the third phase of the standard gauge railway. The negotiating is a loan worth Sh 370 billion that will ensure passengers, goods and equipment are secure during their journey from Mombasa to Malaba in Busia County.
Kenya Railways Acting Director Philip Mahinga said “We all know that the first phase of SGR from Mombasa to Nairobi cost Sh 327 billion and the second phase Sh150 billion. He said For phase 2B, negotiations between the two governments are on so I will not give any figure at the moment.”
The operation and security of the equipment is vital as the trains moving from Mombasa to western Kenya needs to be secure from terrorists and other challenges according to Mahinga.
Meanwhile, Kenyans, the International Monetary Fund and experts has raised concern over the repayment status of the existing loans. They are unhappy about the terms of repayment of the loans. This has brought debate following revelations a few months ago that the port of Mombasa could be handed over to the Chinese if Kenya defaults on the loans.
During a briefing about the status, Chargé d’affaires of Chinese embassy, Li Xuhang said ”The railway has created more than 50,000 jobs locally and boosted Kenya’s economic growth by 1.5 percent. The Chinese government and people have been reading reports that Kenyans do not support the SGR and the loans.”
Li Xuhang further stated that ”They have reached an agreement with the county government of Mombasa to conduct a study along the railway line. We want to talk to the people and get their views and suggestions on how to improve the SGR.”
More Kenyans are employed at the management and subordinate levels of the project. This is more than foreigners according to China Road and Bridge Corporation external communications officer Zhao Yang.