Arise Integrated Industrial Platforms (Arise IIP) has announced that it is expecting the arrival of seven Passenger Railcars imported from Japan on Thursday 26th October, 2023.
In a correspondence addressed to the Minister of Transport and Aviation, Amb. Alhaji Fanday Turay, dated 22nd September, 2023, the General Manager of Interface at Arise IIP, Samuel Komba Kambo, said the Railcars are expected to dock at the Freetown Port on October 26, 2023.
Mr. Kambo explained that bearing the Reference Number ARISESL/0923/02 Title: ‘Arrival of Passenger Trains’, underscores the progress made under the Railway and Port Lease Agreement signed between the Government of Sierra Leone (GoSL) and Arise IIP on January 17, 2023.
The Agreement grants Arise IIP the responsibility to operate and maintain the rail and port infrastructure, including the operation of a passenger rail service.
He said: “Arise IIP has successfully procured and shipped seven passenger railcars and their associated critical spares from Japan, with an anticipated arrival at Freetown Port on October 26, 2023.” He further explained that Arise IIP is diligently preparing for the reception of these railcars, including the mobilization of necessary equipment to safely unload, transport and park them along the rail infrastructure.
One notable aspect mentioned in the letter is the current control of the rail infrastructure by Kingho, prompting Arise IIP to seek permission from the Government to park the railcars along the rail corridor until the commencement of passenger rail services. The letter also includes detailed information, such as a packing list of the railcars with their respective weights and dimensions, as well as a list of critical spares.
Mr. Kambo concluded the letter by expressing Arise IIP’s intention to submit duty-free entry forms for the shipment in the coming week, in accordance with the provisions of the agreement.
The duty-free waiver is a key element in facilitating the successful implementation of the passenger rail service. The letter has been copied to several high-ranking officials and Ministers, including the Chief Minister, the Minister of Mines and Mineral Resources, the Minister of Finance, Attorney General and Minister of Justice, the Secretary to the President, and the Commissioner General of National Revenue Authority (NRA).
As Sierra Leone eagerly awaits the arrival of these passenger Railcars, this development marks a significant step forward in enhancing the country’s transportation infrastructure and fostering economic growth. The successful implementation of the passenger rail service is poised to benefit both local commuters and the broader national economy. Stay tuned for further updates on this exciting development.