In a bid to increase efficiency, improve service delivery, and ensure modernised port development, the Nigerian government has concessioned the Terminal ‘B’ Warri Old Port, in Delta State, to Ocean & Cargo Terminal Services Limited.
The concession of the port is also expected to encourage a reduction in the cost of shipping and clearing of cargo in line with the Nigerian government’s ease of business agenda.
Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) in partnership with the Bureau of Public Procurement (BPE) signed an agreement with Ocean & Cargo, which was considered the preferred bidder with $100.7 million (about 36.4 billion naira).
Director-General of BPE, Alex Okoh, who spoke at the signing said “Government expects nothing less than strict adherence to the terms of the concession agreement from the concessionaire”. He told Ocean & Cargo that the pursuit of its business objectives must be tailored in a way that would assist in the realisation of the objectives of the Government’s ports concession programme.
The ports concession programme, which is under the management of the BPE commenced in 2005, and culminated into the concession of over 23 terminals to private operators. The operators assumed ownership of the ports in 2006, and have made significant investments estimated at about 200 billion naira within a period of 10 years.
Okoh revealed that the ports concession represents one of the success stories of the privatisation and commercialisation programme in Nigeria, and a credible testimony of the viability of the Private Public Partnership (PPP) model in the development and delivery of critical public infrastructure in Nigeria.
He recalled that the Federal Government upgraded the facilities at Terminal B Warri Old Port, which included the construction of a new quay wall and apron equipped with requisite facilities for berthing vessels, making it one of the most modern port terminals in the country at the time.
Managing Director of NPA, Ms. Hadiza Bala Usman expressed delight at the conclusion of the concession of the terminal and noted that the concession of the Port is an important milestone in the economic development of the country.
Usman pledged her support to Ocean and Cargo, but also commended the teams from BPE and NPA for working tirelessly to ensure the completion of the project