By Chiazo Ogbolu/ Florence Onuegbu
The Lekki Port LFTZ Enterprise Ltd. (LPLEL), promoter of the Lekki Deep Sea Port, says the port will boost Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Promote (GDP) and facilitate trade volume.
The Managing Director of LPLEL, Mr Du Ruogang, while addressing the media during the official inauguration of the Lekki Port by President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday said that the macro-economic benefit of the port was enormous.
Ruogang noted that the Lekki Port remains a game-changer that would redefine maritime activities in Nigeria and the entire West African sub-region.
He highlighted other benefits to include; improvement of external trade competitiveness through improved port efficiency, cost-effective port operations and services, and improved turnaround time for cargo handling and clearance.
He listed other benefits of the port as reduction in delays in the supply of raw materials and equipment, reduction in cost of importations and charges such as demurrage, among others.
“With Lekki Port, Nigeria will witness a growth in maritime traffic and global trade and strengthen connectivity and capability to provide efficient and reliable services.
“Lekki Port, no doubt, will be a critical engine that will drive the Nigerian economy upon commencement of operations. I am equally confident that it will help to reinforce Nigeria’s status as a regional maritime hub and enable many related industries to flourish,” he said.
The Chief Executive Officer of Lekki Freeport Terminal, operated by CMA Terminals, a subsidiary of CMA CGM Group, Mr Denrick Moos, said that the Lekki Port would become a new generation container terminal, a game changing infrastructure in Nigeria and West Africa in addition to its state-of-the-art infrastructure.
“The Port is Nigeria’s first deep sea port and is equipped with 13 quay cranes for a capacity of 2.5 million TEUs (Twenty-Foot Equivalent Units) on a 1.2 kilometre quay with a depth of 16 meters, it will operate vessels with a capacity of up to 15,000 TEUs and become one of the largest in West Africa.
“Through the new container terminal at Lekki Port, the CMA CGM Group will further develop its presence in Nigeria, the continent’s largest economy and population, and the most important consumer market in West Africa and will consolidate its African global shipping and logistics network.
“Committed to supporting its customers’ supply chains in Nigeria and West Africa with a comprehensive range of shipping and logistics solutions, the CMA CGM Group also participates in strengthening the region’s logistics and ports infrastructures through significant investments as a global port operator with its subsidiary CMA Terminals,” he said.
Also, Executive Governor of Lagos State, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, noted that the project was a big testament to the commitment of the government to support the provision of necessary infrastructure that would improve the economic fortunes of Lagosians by providing thousands of jobs for the people and impacting their lives positively.
On his part, the Chairman of Lekki Port, Mr Biodun Dabiri, expressed profound gratitude to the President and his team for giving all the necessary backing that ensured the project came to fruition.
He stressed that the management of the Port is working round-the-clock to get the port operational soon.
“We owe a great deal of this success to the visionary leadership of President Buhari, who provided the much-needed support to make the project a reality and appreciate Governor Sanwo-Olu, and all other stakeholders for their role in the actualization of the Port.
“For us, we will continue to be a willing partner in the quest to achieve significant economic growth by investing in Nigeria,” Dabiri said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Lekki Port LFTZ Enterprise Limited (LPLEL) is a joint venture enterprise owned by foreign promoters, Lekki Port Investment Holdings Inc (comprising China Harbour Engineering Company Ltd. and Tolaram), the Lagos State Government, and the Federal Government of NPA.
LPLEL is incorporated under the Companies & Allied Matters Act regime and licensed by the Lagos Free Zone to operate in the Free Zone under the NEPZ Act. This opens a host of benefits for Lekki Port regarding taxes, duties, and other incentives.
The Lekki Port is a multi-purpose Deep Sea Port at the heart of the Lagos Free Trade Zone, one of the most modern ports, supporting the burgeoning trade across Nigeria and the entire West African region. (NAN)(www.nannews.ng)
Edited by Chinyere Joel-Nwokeoma