NPA enlarges Rivers port for bigger vessels, eyes $2 million additional revenue.
The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) is increasing the depth of the draught at Onne Port in Rivers State to 11 meters to allow for patronage by bigger vessels.
Situated on Bonny River estuary along Ogu Creek, the facility, which occupies 2,538.115 hectares, accounts for over 65 percent of the export cargoes through the nation’s seaports. Its current draught is 10 meters.
NPA Managing Director, Hadiza Bala Usman, who dropped the hint while receiving the Danish Ambassador to Nigeria, Jesper Kamp, at the agency’s corporate headquarters yesterday in Lagos, noted that the deeper draught would allow bigger vessels to berth at the port.
The move, according to insiders, would boost Maersk Line’s operations and the facility’s revenue base by $2 million.
Represented by the Executive Director, Marine and Operations, Sokonte Davies, the NPA boss called for continued engagements in the sector.
She assured the envoy that her organization was committed to the growth of businesses through the provision of an enabling environment and all that it takes to execute the mission.
Bala Usman also disclosed that NPA was consistent with its vision to develop deep seaports nationwide in tune with expectations of the global economy, especially as they relate to the maritime sector.
Earlier, the ambassador said the visit was part of efforts to promote Danish-Nigerian trade relations and attract investments to the country.
Kamp said besides facilitating investments in infrastructure, he had been mobilizing Danish companies to invest in Nigeria, citing MAERSK Line and others.
He disclosed that his home government operates 30 commercial vessels in the Gulf of Guinea, thus is concerned about security in the nation’s maritime domain.
The Danish envoy added that the government was collaborating with the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) to train marine cadets and security personnel, urging the NPA to be part of it.
The Managing Director of MAERSK Line, Gildas Tohouo, who accompanied the ambassador, thanked NPA and other stakeholders for their support and efforts at deepening the Rivers port.
He pledged his firm’s willingness to patronize the facility the very moment the job is done.