NSC seeks investors, lenders to fund Inland Ports, Transit Parks devt
The Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC) said it has opened up opportunity for prospective and interested investors to come and invest in the development of Inland Dry Ports and Truck Transit Parks (TTP) across different parts of the country.
The Council also disclosed that it has also begun to search for interested financial institutions to serve as lenders to finance the project so as to enable them commence operations.
BusinessDay search reveals that the Council has concluded plans to host some key investors and lending institutions in a meeting where the prospects and economic benefits of the projects will be sold to both parties.
Also, developing both projects was geared at attracting more foreign direct investment into the maritime sector and ensuring that shipping services are made easier for all importers and exporters involved in international trade.
Hassan Bello, executive secretary of the NSC, who made this disclosure at the weekend, said there has been rising activities especially around the Inland Ports project.
Citing example of such project, the NSC boss pointed at Kaduna Inland Port, which he said has already taken off but only awaiting fora formal launch. He added that construction works has commenced in Isiala Ngwa Inland Port in Abia State.
Bello further said that construction work at the port site in Funtua has also started, while in Jos, more progress has been made even as the Federal Government has started the rehabilitation of the rail line leading to the Port.
According to him, Inland Port in Benin City has also made significant progress, adding that as a Greenfield investment, the Council will soon be meeting with the Infrastructural Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) for the completion of other processes.
“We are seeing some progress but we want that progress to become more in the next few weeks.
We shall take a holistic approach by holding a meeting with the concessionaires because the ports have already been concessioned and some state governments have also endorsed the projects,” he said.
Recall that the Council has the mandate to establish Inland Ports in the six-geopolitical zones in the country and they include Kaduna; Isiala Ngwa in Aba; Erunmu in Ibadan; Heipang in Jos; Zawachiki in Kano, Zamfarawa Funtua and Jauri in Maiduguri.
The Kaduna IDP which has Port of Origin status is already operational.
Bello however said that both projects when completed will create employment for many Nigerians as well as boost the economies of the areas where they are located.
Similarly, TTP project is also a modern transport infrastructure which aim is to ensure safety and security in the movement of goods from one destination to another.
Under the programme, the TTPs will be established at special points in different areas in the country along major expressways for truck drivers to park, rest and refresh themselves before continuing the journey. This is what obtains in many advanced countries to promote safety and security of persons and goods on the way to different shippers.
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