FG inaugurates 6,000 TEU capacity private jetty, container terminal at Apapa

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By Grace Alegba

The Federal Government has inaugurated a  6,000 TEU capacity private jetty and container terminal at Apapa in Lagos.

 

Mr Mohammed Bello-Koko, the Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), who commended the project during the inaugural ceremony on Monday, said it would boost the ease of doing business in the country.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the private project is financed and handled by Beachland Consultium Ltd. (BCTL), which consists of three companies.

Bello-Koko, represented by Mr Sylvester Egede, Port Manager at Tincan, said that the facility was designed to enhance business activities in Nigeria and advance global trade practices.

He said that the project aligned with NPA’s strategy to foster new businesses and promote multimodal transport in line with global best practices.

“Already, we are witnessing improvements of inland traffic to and from our ports.

“These, coupled with developments in intermodal transportation, as occasioned by our advancing rail system, are bound to encourage and stimulate immense opportunities in the maritime ecosystem.

“It would be pertinent to mention that the combination of being a coastal nation and the sub-regional economic powerhouse as well as being the continent’s most populous nation with a youth population at about 60 per cent, compels us to take advantage of every opportunity to deepen our port competitiveness and rating.

“Also to attract necessary opportunities to cater to this growing demography,” he said.

He commended the management of BCTL for their foresight that gave birth to the project and reaffirmed the authority’s unwavering commitment to supporting local investors.

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Mr Joseph Akolo, the Managing Director of BCTL, assured round-the-clock customs and terminal services to prevent delays and congestion.

He noted the infrastructure’s capability to handle both barges and ships, enhancing efficiency and customer service.

“Now, we have facilities that can handle berges and at the same time handle ship. This will aid ease of doing business and will give customers the cheapest fast service,” he said.

Mr Godwin Ebrimoni, Group General Manager, BCTL, said the newly inaugurated jetty and terminal was unique because it was the only one in Kirikiri.

According  to him, the project is currently linking two other port commands to become a network of three.

“We have Apapa Command, Tincan Command, then these two commands I mentioned have their ports where vessels come, and when vessels come, they now feed Kirikiri Command, which is this command. But, this jetty has come up, so that it will merge with Apapa and Tincan Command.

“In order words, now, KLTC Command has gotten a jetty just as the other two, that makes it unique,” he said.

Mr Ajibola Ogunsiji, the Chairman of Joatelim, appealed for support from regulatory agencies to ensure the successful operation of the facility, which is expected to create over 1,500 jobs.

Dr Dayo Mobereola, the Director-General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), pledged to enforce laws and regulations for smooth operations.

The Comptroller General of Customs, Adewale Adeniyi, commended the project and pledged the support of the Nigerian Customs Service.

“A lot of hard work has been put into this project. I can assure you that on the part of the Nigerian Customs Service, that is in line with our mandate of trade facilitation. We will support this terminal in every way that we can,” he said.

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Comptroller Martina Tilley-Gyado, Customs Area Comtroller of Kirikiri Lighter Terminal Command (KLTC), lauded the project, saying the jetty would be the first to have the opportunity to berth a ship.

Earlier, the guest speaker, Prof. Afeisimi Badaiki, who highlighted the significance of jetties and container terminals for marine and land operations, called for infrastructure development for improved business operations.

He urged regulatory agencies to effectively enforce and implement existing laws and regulations for smooth operations, while checking activities of unlicensed operators.

He also called for infrastructure development to further enhance smooth operations of jetties and ease of doing business in the nation. (NAN)

Edited by Josephine Obute/ Olawunmi Ashafa

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