French infrastructure group Bolloré wins Guinea rail contract

French infrastructure group Bolloré has signed a contract with Guinea’s Port Authority to build rail line from the capital Conakry to the dry port of Kagbelen, a spokeswoman for the company told Steel First.

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Bolloré Africa Logistics, a subsidiary of Bolloré Group and one of the largest privately-owned infrastructure companies operating in Africa, said that it was committed to developing rail logistics in Guinea.

“The railway is expected to play a key role in relieving Conakry’s congestion, as well as creating a supply line to the new Kagbelen business zone,” Bolloré said.

The group did not comment on the cost of construction or give a date for the completion of the work.

Construction of the Kagbelen dry port started in 2012 and the port’s operator, Guinean shipping agency Afrimarine, said that it was positioning itself to be the logistics partner of choice for large-scale mining projects in Guinea.

Guinea’s colonial-era state-run rail system has lain in disrepair for decades.

A $1 billion refurbishment of the Conakry to Kankan passenger line by Vale, BSG Resources joint venture VBG started in 2010 but work halted shortly afterwards.

Funding issues have plagued a proposed 670km TransGuinean rail line to link the country’s iron ore-rich south east to ports close to Conakry.

The government of Guinea and a consortium led by Anglo Australia mining major Rio Tinto said in August they were looking to turn over the funding, construction and operation of the line to a third party.

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