The Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC), says the Abuja-Kaduna rail line is close to breaking even with a 400 percent increase in revenue in 2018.
The Managing Director of NRC, Fidet Okhiria, who made the disclosure while speaking in Abuja on Tuesday, said the feat is as a result of efforts made by the corporation.
He, however, lamented the huge expenses incurred on diesel to power the train stations along the rail corridor.
“We are close to breaking even on the Abuja-Kaduna train and we have made progress because of the efforts we made when we started. We were earning about N16 million and spending about N56 million.
“But right now, we can comfortably say we earn over N80 million, although we still spend over N100 million, which is closer to breaking even. By the time we have more coaches and run more trains, I think the expenses will reduce and more patronage will come in.
“The issue we have now is that we only run passenger trains. We don’t have freight to move from Kaduna to Abuja.
“Right now, all our stations are still powered by generator 24/7 and we buy about 99,000 litres (of diesel) every month to power those generators. So it eats deep into our revenue. But by the time we are able to connect to the public power supply, which we hope by this month will be done, the cost of buying diesel will drastically reduce and then we can break even.”
Okhiria said more coaches will be deployed on the route as the number of train trips has increased from four to eight.