NPA, APM Capital Sign MoU to Extend Barges to Epe

Hadiza Bala-Usman
Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Hadiza Bala-Usman

By Eromosele Abiodun

As part of its efforts in finding lasting solution to the Apapa gridlock problems, the Management of the NPA has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with APM Capital to extend the use of barges to evacuate containers from the ports beyond Ikorodu to Epe sooner.

Speaking when she hosted a team from AP Moller Capital in her office, the Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Hadiza Bala–Usman, said the problem of Apapa access road seems intractable because of decade long decadence which was caused by multiplicity of problems.

Bala-Usman, pointed out that the NPA had made several efforts including contributing N1.8billion to rehabilitate the road at a time as well also coming up with Call Up System, which would soon be upgraded to be electronically.

Also, she asserted that NPA would continue to consult with stakeholders across all levels, since the provision of infrastructure is crucial for sustainable ports operations.

She further assured stakeholders that NPA would build on the synergy that exists with stakeholders and also commended Ministers of Transportation, the Board of Directors of NPA, and the management of APM Capital.

In his response, the Senior Investment Advisor of APM Capital, Fleming Dalgaard assured on the construction of a Jetty and Truck Park to facilitate the movement of cargo with barges from the port.

He added that they would provide technical capital, competence experience, financial capacity and other required resources.
Dalgaard, commended the openness of the management of NPA, saying that such transparency and efficiency were part of the quality that excited them to come forward for the signing of the MoU.

Amongst issues agreed in the MoU include: The NPA in realisation of the fact that the provision of infrastructure is crucial for sustainable operation of ports has continued to pursue a programme of infrastructural investments, the NPA and APMC entered discussions and have agreed to find a lasting solution to the traffic situation in and around the ports, there is a need to provide the level of required infrastructure.

Others are: APMC has indicated their interest, technical capacity, competence, experience, financial capacity and other required resources to execute or cause the project required resources to execute or cause the project required for the attainment of item two above, the project that are currently being contemplated include the construction of a jetty and truck park to facilitate the movement of cargo by barge from the ports, APMC understands that some associates investments like construction of truck holding bays maybe required to support the option in item four above and APMC intends to commit financial and human resources to further explore these solutions even though the exact nature of infrastructure to be provided may differ from the option currently being envisage in the course of further studies and time spent on the project.