SIX out of 45 companies have been shortlisted to construct the Eastern rail project that will link the capital, Accra, to second city Kumasi, and from Accra suburb, Achimota, to the Tema Port.
Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Railway Development Authority (GRDA), Richard Diedong Dombo, confirmed the reports and said arriving at the six shortlisted companies, the committee and the advisers took into consideration their financial and technical capacities.
‘The government of Ghana cannot fund the project from its resources. On an infrastructure where the construction of a single kilometre on average costs about $4 million, we cannot rush things, so we took our time to evaluate their financial and technical capacities,’ said Dombo.
The final six, who come from the USA, France, Germany, China and Ghana, have been sent to a tender review committee for further evaluation and once approved, they would settle on the preferred contractor for the project.
The Eastern Railway project
The Eastern Railway project is part of GRDA master plan of modernising the country’s network and adding 4,000km to its length. The gauge rail running from Accra to Kumasi has a total track length of 330km and the gauge is 1,067 mm. Re-construction of the rail is estimated to cost $1bn with a single kilometre costing an estimated $4m.
The reconstruction will include financing, development and operation of the line. It will also include the provision of rolling stock, station upgrades, signalling and communication equipment. The construction of the Eastern rail will be carried out in six stages and will be done on a Build, Operate and Transfer (BOT) basis.
On the western rail line, Dombo said the authority was using the same process as there was currently an evaluation process on received bids out of which the preferred company would be chosen. The government had also taken a step to commit its own resources to construct 22 kilometres out of the 333km stretch.
‘We have already awarded 5km to Amandi Constructions and a subsequent contract has also been signed subject to a value for value audit which is almost complete. Once the audit is completed by the ministry, then approval can be given for the construction of another 17km,’ said Dombo.