The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) is working with the World Bank, terminal operators and other stakeholders, in a bid to ensure that the planned review of the port concession agreement yields the desired result.
At the International Associations of Ports and Harbour (IAPH) conference tagged ‘African Ports and Interland Connectivity’, The Managing Director of NPA, Hadiza Bala-Usman said the Nigerian government will launch the revised port concession agreement between the NPA and private terminal operators in the next three months.
Bala-Usman said “the ports concession agreement was first signed by the federal government and terminal private operators in 2006. But, the revised concession agreement will help re-assess the values of leased assets, as well as factors that inhibit the realisation of the objectives of the concession such as poor dredging, dilapidated road infrastructure around the ports, inconsistent government policies and lack of regulatory framework”.
The Managing Director also revealed that the reviewed port concession agreement between the NPA and private terminal operators will introduce sanctions to any party that failed to carry out its responsibilities as stipulated in the agreement.
She admitted the plan is to attract private investors to Nigerian ports by assuring them of government’s determination to continue to provide necessary infrastructure at the ports. Bala-Usman added that “we are currently reviewing the concession agreement, we are working with the World Bank as a technical partner. What we have discovered is that there is no clarity on sanctions for anyone of the partners that violates the rules. No clarity as to what form of penalty. These are the things we are looking at and we have gone far in the process”.
Deputy Director, Guangzhou Port Authority, Yuan Yue revealed that trade between the China Port of Guangzhou and Nigeria increased to $2.6 billion in 2017. She also noted that the volume of export and import between Africa and Guangzhou was $12.86 billion, up by 11 percent year on year.