Governor Babtunde Fashola
By Gboyega Akinsanmi
The Federal Government, through the Ministry of Aviation, has granted site approval for the construction of the proposed Lekki-Epe International Airport, Lagos State Government has said.
The state Commissioner for Commerce & Industry, Mrs. Senapon Oworu, disclosed the development at an annual ministerial media briefing she addressed recently along with Special Adviser (Commerce & Industry), Mr. Oluseye Oladejo and Permanent Secretary (Information & Strategy), Mrs. Oluranti Odutola, among others.
Speaking at the briefing, the commissioner said the state government had commenced work on the development of the Lekki-Epe International Airport to complement and provide alternative to the existing airport in the state.
Oworu explained that the state government had successfully obtained the site approval for the Airport from the Federal Ministry of Aviation, which she said, was essential to the project development.
She said the state government “has also completed the master plan on the 3,500 hectares of land earmarked for the project. The airport is designed to handle about 5 million passengers annually with provision for a modular terminal for future expansion.
She disclosed that preliminary work on the project had since commenced with the clearing of 4.5 km of the access road and 9km of perimeter road, and added that this was in furtherance of its objective to make the Lekki Free Trade Zone a fully functional investment haven.
She also reiterated that the Lekki Free Zone project was a reality as it has so far attracted key players particularly in the oil and gas sector with a greater prospect of attracting more investors as its development progresses, especially with the provision of power.
She said a further testimony “to the development of the Zone is the interest expressed by the Federal Government through the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to establish a pioneer Hydrocarbon Industry Park, which would comprise of a Green Field Refinery, Petrochemical, Fertiliser and Power Plant within the Zone.
“The state government has earmarked about 1,500 hectares of land for the entire project out which 550 hectares will be released for the development of the refinery and power plant.
“A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed with the NNPC to this effect. The Refinery is designed to have a refining capacity of between 200,000 - 300,000 barrels of crude oil per day.
“When completed, it will help to shore up the domestic refinery capacity and close the prevailing demand - supply gap for petroleum products in the country”, the commissioner said.
Oworu affirmed that the state government had made appreciable progress in some of the social challenges that had in the past encumbered the smooth implementation of the Lekki-Free Zone Project.