Sierra Leone Telegraph: 09 January 2021:
Yesterday, the management of Kingho Investment Company Limited signed a lease agreement with officials of the mining and minerals sector of Sierra Leone for the use of railway and port facilities that will ensure the company’s subsidiary – Kingho Railway and Port Company Limited can utilize the infrastructure for transporting its iron ore out of the country.
The 192-kilometre railway facility which stretches from the new Iron Ore mines in Tonkolili District to the port town of Pepel in Port Loko District, is owned by the Government of Sierra Leone (GoSL).
The government of Sierra Leone through the Ministry of Mines and Mineral Resources and the National Minerals Agency (NMA) yesterday signed the lease agreement granting Kingho Railway and Port Company Limited the right to operate the railway and port facility.
Kingho Railway and Port Company Limited will also commercialise the use of the railway and port to other potential users along the railway and port corridor after completion of multi-million dollar restoration and expansion work.
Shortly after the signing of the lease which took place at the Ministry of Mines and Mineral Resources, Chief Executive officer (CEO) of Kingho Investment Company Limited, Gilbert Zhao expressed his sincere thanks and appreciation on behalf of the Board of Directors and Management of Kingho Sierra Leone to every single government official who has worked so hard for the successful signing ceremony.
“The fulfilment of this agreement proves that Kingho is here to do business and in the right way,” Gilbert Zhao stressed whilst adding that “the company is trying to build a solid foundation on our success on compliance to all government and local regulations and laws and in a transparent manner for the benefit of the company and the people of Sierra Leone.”
Kingho Railway and Port Company Limited will work strictly under the guidelines of the agreement and to fulfil all its obligations, Gilbert Zhao said.
Minister of Mines and Mineral Resources, Timothy Kabba said that the lease agreement is a way of showcasing government’s support to enabling a very good working atmosphere for investors.
It could be recalled that in September 2020, the Government of Sierra Leone through the Ministry of Mines and Mineral Resources, handed over the new Tonkolili Iron Ore Project to Kingho Mining Company Limited.
Both Kingho Mining Company Limited and Kingho Railway and Port Company Limited are subsidiaries of the parent body Kingho Investment Company Limited which itself is headed by CEO Gilbert Zhao.