- Meets APM terminals representatives in London
- Facility to generate over 500,000 direct and indirect jobs
By Yemi Adebowale
Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State on Thursday met with representatives of APM Terminals to advance the development of the Badagry Deep Sea Port project, restating his administration’s key strategic imperative to creating a friendly environment to encourage private sector participation in driving economic development in the State.
At the meeting which took place in London, United Kingdom, Ambode said the Badagry Deep Sea Port Project with an estimated investment of over $2.3billion would address the infrastructure enhancement and urban renewal agenda of the State.
Ambode, who expressed appreciation on the resolve of the investors to stay the course with the project, said the facility on completion would generate over 500,000 direct and indirect jobs.
He assured that government would spare nothing to see the project to realization, while pledging that the interests of the host communities within the location of the project will be protected.
He said the Badagry Deep Sea Port, on completion, will be the biggest in the African continent as it is expected to sit on a land space of over 1000 hectares.
Speaking on behalf of APM Terminals, Head of Africa, Peter Volkjaer Jorgensen said the Group was strongly committed to partnering the State Government on the project.
The meeting had in attendance Country Manager, APM Terminal, Mr. David Skov; Chairman APM Terminal Apapa, Chief Ernest Shonekan; Head of Africa, APM Terminal, Peter Volkjaer Jorgensen; Chairman, Supreme Offshore Ltd, Mr. Chidi Ofong; Mr. Koye Edu; Lagos State Commissioner for Commerce, Mr. Rotimi Ogunleye; Permanent Secretary, Lagos Global, Mr. Olajide Bashorun and Country Senior Partner, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Mr. Uyi Akpata.
It would be recalled that Ambode, back in July 16, 2015, inspected the Badagry Deep Sea Port project where he assured that the state government would give adequate support to the initiative just as he assured the communities within the location of the project that their interests will be protected
He said the Deep Sea Port, on completion, would be the biggest in the African continent.
The governor said: “The land space for the Deep Sea Port is over 1000 hectares of which we have just been told that there’s going to be a free trade zone and then a container terminal that we are going to have here.
“We already know that the investors have done the best they can. We have Mearsk in the bouquet of investors who have signed on to this project and what that means for us is that we are going to have the largest cargo container port in Africa, situated in Badagry.
“That means a lot of us in terms of employment. It means a lot for us also in terms of new settlement like it has been said, we hope that in the next two months we’re coming to start this project here”.
He said that he personally came to see the project, stating that it was part of his promise aimed at bringing development to the communities in that axis.
Harping on the need for compensation, he said that the state government would ensure that the 12 communities expected to be resettled as a result of the project are duly compensated.
“Like you have also been told, this project is 500 metres away from the ‘Point of No Return’ which is also a tourist attraction for us, So, we have decided to protect that particular place to make sure that tourism is also complemented in this project.
“With a Deep Sea Port project like this, it means that there would be new settlements in Badagry, new towns and the standard of living is positively affected by this kind of project”.