By LOD Onyeji
…Major infrastructure investments to boost maritime industry in Nigeria…
In a significant move to enhance Nigeria’s maritime industry, the Federal Executive Council (FEC) has given its approval for port development projects valued at $4.7 billion. These projects will be carried out in Delta, Ondo, and Lagos States, signaling a major boost for the country’s economy. The decision was made during the weekly FEC meeting, which was chaired by President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.
Prince Ademola Adegoroye, the Minister of State for Transportation, announced that the council had authorized the development of three ports: the Ondo Multi-Purpose Port in Ilaje, Snake Island in Lagos State, and Burutu in Delta State. These projects will be executed through Public-Private Partnership (PPP) arrangements, with no cost to the Federal Government. Private firms will finance the developments, which will be operated for 45 to 50 years.
The Ondo Multi-Purpose Port, estimated to cost $1,480,465,253, will be concessioned for a period of 50 years. The private developers will bear the financial responsibility, and the concessionaire is expected to earn $50 billion, with the Federal Government reaping $2.6 billion from the project.
The Burutu port, with an estimated cost of $1,285,005,818, will be concessioned for 40 years. The concessionaire is projected to earn $125 billion, while the Federal Government stands to gain $9 billion during the concession period.
The Snake Island Port, set to cost $974,185,203, will be concessioned for 45 years. The expected returns for the concessionaire are $18 billion, with the Federal Government receiving $5.23 billion.
These substantial investments in port development are expected to transform the maritime sector in Nigeria, enhance trade activities, and create numerous employment opportunities. The government’s decision to involve private firms through PPP arrangements reflects a strategic approach to leveraging private sector expertise and resources for infrastructure development.
In a related development, Prince Ademola Adegoroye, the Minister of State for Transportation, commended the Director-General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) for offering scholarships to indigenes of Akure. The scholarships will provide educational opportunities for talented individuals and contribute to the development of human capital in the transportation sector.
The approval of these port development projects by the FEC underscores the government’s commitment to fostering economic growth and development. With enhanced port infrastructure, Nigeria is poised to strengthen its position as a major player in international trade and maritime activities, further driving the nation’s progress and prosperity.