Asian-Guinean consortium Société Minière de Boké-Winning Africa (SMB-Winning), which include Singapore’s Winning Shipping Ltd, the Yantai Port Group, transport and logistics company UMS, leading Chinese aluminum producer Shandong Weiqiao and the Republic of Guinea, a 10 percent shareholder, has signed a contract with China Railway 18th Bureau Group Co., Ltd and China Railway 14th Bureau Group Co., Ltd. for the construction of the Dapilon-Santou Railway, with both companies signing the railway engineering and construction contracts respectively.
The signature officially launches the construction phase of the SMB-Winning Consortium’s Dapilon-Santou Railway that will allow a formal start of operation in June, 2021.
“The official signing of the engineering contracts means that the SMB-Winning Consortium’s Dapilon-Santou Railway has formally entered the construction phase, and marks a momentous start conducive to the target of formal operation of the SMB-Winning Consortium’s Dapilon-Santou Railway by June 16, 2021,” Mr. Tony Sun, the Vice President of Winning International Group and representative of the SMB-Winning Consortium Railway Company said after the conclusion of the contract-signing ceremony.
The Dapilon-Santou Railway is located within the Boké and Kindia regions in northwestern Guinea, designed exclusively for the mining zones and will connect the Port of Dapilon with the Santou mine zone. Stretching for a total length of roughly 135km, the entirety of the railway will feature 23 bridges, two tunnels and six depots. The Dapilon-Santou Railway is a crucial support for the SMB-Winning Consortium’s mineral extraction and recovery operation in the Santou mining zone, as well as a vital infrastructure facility that will serve other mining companies and business operators along its route.
During its early and near-future phases, the railway will be primarily tasked with the transportation of mineral rocks from the mining zone to the Consortium Boké Harbor No. 2 (Dapilon Harbor). Further down the road, there are hopes to open its services to third-parties, and to integrate the railway into the Guinean national railway transport network to better serve the country’s socio-economic development.
Three agreements were signed in 2018, between SMB-Winning and the Government of the Republic of Guinea for the execution of a comprehensive project for the Boké region valued at $3 billion. Following this, the foundation stone for a new railway line was laid last month. The $3 billion investment is in addition to the $1 billion already invested for the construction of the port terminals of Dapilon and Katougouma.