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Rising from a one-day summit which was organised by Golden Edge Consult, in collaboration with the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), the participants which comprised of experts and best brains in the maritime industry also lauded government’s vision on the on-going Public Private Partnership arrangement, stressing that the formula remains the most viable means of engendering sustained development of the maritime sector, in view of paucity of public funds.
“Port concession in Nigeria has been largely successful. Vessels waiting time has reduced to one day and even zero at the AP Moeller Terminal while container throughput has continued to rise,” the summit acknowledged, counseling the need for green field port development, so as to boost employment, further reduce dwell time of cargoes at the ports, as well as equally reduce the cost of doing business among other advantages.
The stakeholders highlighted that over 12 years of stable democracy and uninterrupted concession had erased fears of investors losing investments in green field port development either in short or long-term investment Therefore, authorities should build on investors’ confidence by adopting measures capable of directly attracting foreign funds and resources.
Some of their recommendations, however, included the following: That adequate feasibility and environmental impact assessment must be undertaken before developing a green port; that government should forget about equity holding in green fields; leaving instead 100per cent to the investors while assisting such investors with the necessary facilities for maintaining the channels, breakwaters, good roads and rail network, while it receives royalties; that alternatively, government through the port authority should embark on the development of green fields and concession them later to private operators.Share