APMT declares new Badagry Port ‘answer to Nigeria’s logistics infrastructure challenge’
… Says future port will set pace for African mkt, make Nigera more competitive globally
While speaking on Fixing Transport and Logistics for a Globalised Nigeria at the Nigeria Summit 2013 organised by The Economist and held at the Eko Convention Centre in Lagos on Tuesday; Sondergaard said: “Competition is intensifying regionally and within Nigeria while hinterland connectivity faces certain infrastructure constraints.
“APM Terminals has recently invested over $200 million in Apapa and West Africa Container Terminal (WACT), Onne to improve capacity at both terminals. However, Nigerian cargo throughput is expected to increase at 8-10 per cent per year over the next decade. This means existing port infrastructure will be capacity constrained by around 2017.
“There has been significant development at the ports since the concessioning in 2006. The waiting time of vessels at APM Terminals Apapa has gone down to zero from over 30 days (before APM Terminals started the 2006 concession) while volumes have more than doubled. That is clear proof the Nigerian port concession program has been a tremendous success for the nation.
“The next phase is the most important phase to ensure Nigeria remains a market leader through a competitive port. It’s a pattern we see in other world markets where countries outgrow their city ports and need to build in a new location that addresses trade growth and city traffic issues. The country must act fast and Badagry is our solution.”
On infrastructure constraints, Sondergaard said: “30 years from now, Nigeria will have close to 250 million inhabitants putting even more pressure on city centers, roads, rail, etc. However during the last 50 years, volume of cargo transported by rail has dropped 88% to nearly nothing. This is an enormous opportunity, but significant investment must be made in advance. A modernized rail network connecting Badagry to metro-Lagos, Ibadan, Abuja and other city centers in the north and neighboring countries is the way forward.”
APM Terminals and its consortium partners last year announced plans to develop a new greenfield mega-port project and Free Trade Zone at Badagry 55 kilometres west of Apapa.
Sondergaard said that at full build-out, the deep-water full-service port will be one of the largest in Africa with seven kilometres of quay and 1,000 hectares (2,470 acres) of dedicated yard, and will include the most modern facilities for container, bulk, liquid bulk, roll-on roll-off (Ro/Ro), general cargo, oil and gas operations support and a barge terminal.
“Plans for the adjoining Badagry Free Trade Zone will include a power plant, oil refinery, industrial park and warehousing and Inland Container Deport functions. The first phase of the project is scheduled to open in 2016,” Sondergaard said, adding that “the Nigerian Ports Authority, Lagos State and the Nigerian Federal Government have been supportive and positive.”
APM Terminals is currently one of the leading global port operators in Africa, and in West Africa in particular, where the APM Terminals Global Terminal Network include nine facilities in eight West African nations, including those in Nigeria, namely: Apapa Container Terminal at the Lagos Port Complex (LPC), Apapa, Lagos State, and West Africa Container Terminal at the Onne Port, Rivers State.
APM Terminals Apapa, which assumed operations at the Apapa Container Terminal in 2006, is now the busiest container terminal in West Africa, handling 618,000 20-foot equivalent units (TEUs) in 2012.
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