“[Lekki deep seaport] will create 169,972 jobs and bring revenues totaling $201 billion to the state and FG through taxes, royalties, and duties.” – Lai Mohammed.
Ever wondered the magnitudinal nature of what is expected to be the deepest and biggest Seaport in Sub-saharan Africa? – A port that has a turning circle of 600 meters, capable of occupying 6 million TEUs of containers and a significant volume of liquid and dry bulk uncontainerized cargoes.
THE LEKKI DEEP SEAPORT – ALL YOU NEED KNOW
The Lekki Deep Sea Port which is over 90% to completion, is a multi-purpose, deep sea port located in Lekki, at the heart of the Lagos Free Trade Zone, which is proposed to be the biggest in Sub-saharan Africa and one of the most modern ports in West Africa. Totally different from what has been seen, The Lekki Port will grant extraordinary support to the sprouting commercial operation across Nigeria and the entire West African region.
Reportedly, with the capacity of handling around 6 million TEUs of containers and a significant volume of liquid and dry bulk uncontainerized cargoes, the Lekki port will be graced with ships capable of transporting over 14,500 containers, expanding up to 90 hectares of land.
It will be the deepest and biggest seaport in Sub-saharan Africa, with a draught capacity of 16.5 meters and a turning circle of 600 meters, which would enable it to handle the largest generation of vessels. It is expected to be completed before 2023 and operations to commence fully in the first half.
INVESTORS, CONTRACTORS AND FURTHER FEUTURES OF THE LEKKI SEAPORT
The Lekki Deep Seaport which is meant to be a big ‘game-changer’ in the country’s maritime economy and more is a $2 billion investment in the Lagos Free Trade zone, initiated by Tolaram Group, a Singaporean company, and being constructed by the China Habour Engineering firm. The port construction is financed by private investors and a consortium of banks who had most recently funded the project with $1.5 billion as of March 2021.
The Chief Executive Officer of Lagos Free Zone, Mr. Dinesh Rathi, said that Tolaram Group, the Singaporean coy, initiated a $2 billion investment in the Lagos Free Zone, out of which the investor committed $950 million to developing manufacturing hub in the zone.
Hence, the construction of the port is staged into three phases, Its phase one was operational in 2018, which basically saw it comprising of three container berths equipped to handle more than 1.8 million TEUs — one berth for dry bulk goods and two berths for liquid cargo. The second, in 2020, equipped to handle about 3.5 million TEUs; and the last phase which is due completion by September 2022 has the capacity of handling around 6 million TEUs of containers and a significant volume of liquid and dry bulk uncontainerized cargoes.
Reporting the news of the latest status update released by the company’s promoter social media page, Lekki Port LFTZ Enterprise Limited – dredging and reclamation works has reached 93.78% completion and Quay Wall 89.96% completion, while Breakwater and the Landside Infrastructure has also reached 83.63% and 74.35% completion, respectively. With this development, Lekki Port is on the verge of completion and will open run in September 2022, then be fully operational by December 2022 or first quarter of 2023.
COMMENTS, REMARKS AND STATEMENTS ON THE LEKKI SEAPORT.
Lekki Port LFTZ Enterprise Limited’ social media page made it aware that the Port is built to operate on the forefront of technology. By the time the port will be fully operational, its running and management will be handled by Lekki Freeport Terminal (a subsidiary of CMA CGA), and the screening and processing of shipment will become completely automated, thereby promoting efficient and smooth service to the end-users.
Moreover, he disclosed that the Lekki Port is being constructed to be the model of a typical modern port, “as it boasts of state-of-the-art equipment such as Rubber Tyre Gantry cranes which can be used for intermodal operations to stack containers and Ship to Shore cranes, handling equipment to deliver 30 moves per hour.”
Speaking on the construction progress, the Managing Director of Lekki Port, Du Ruogang, made it clear that the project’s EPC Contractor, China Harbour Engineering LFTZ Enterprise, is working round the clock to make sure that the port is delivered at, even ahead of the agreed completion schedule. He holds that “..a significant distinguishing feature of the Port is that it has a draught capacity of 16.5metres, [adding that] it has a turning circle of 600 meters, which would enable it to handle the largest generation of vessels.”
Babajide Sanwo-Olu, The Lagos State Governor, earlier in March 2021, disclosed that the Lekki Deep Seaport is expected to begin operations by the first quarter of 2023, as the construction firm, China Habour Engineering firm had made terrific improvement with the project.
He stated that “Given the report I got and what I have seen here, I can say that Lagos Free Zone has made tremendous improvement. We have seen the level of partnership Tolaram Group is bringing in terms of international investment and local brands on this corridor. I commend all stakeholders that are with us on this journey we have found ourselves. With the level of work we have seen, I’m truly excited. It is more gratifying that, we are taking up this assignment with all energies required and we all can see what we can achieve when we work together.”
He ended by saying “Since we signed a loan agreement less than 18 months ago, we have demonstrated strong capability in bringing the project to reality. This is the first quarter of 2021 and we have seen the project in about 48 per cent completion.
The investors have given us the commitment on first quarter of 2023 completion date. We will fulfill all our parts to make sure this date becomes reality.”
Also Speaking on the Seaport, Rotimi Amaechi, The Minister of Transportation, said in January 2022 that the Lekki deep seaport will be completed in 2022 with its operations automated. Chairman of Lagos Free Zone Development Company, Mr. Biodun Dabiri, applauded the State Government for its focus towards improving the face of commerce in Africa, pointing out that all statutory permits, licences and endorsement for the Lekki port project were already secured.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, specifically defined the Lekki Deep Seaport as a ‘game changer’ in the Maritime Sector, which is capable of turning Nigeria into a shipping hub, skyrocket the economy and create job opportunities.
In his statement, Lai Mohammed satisfactorily said that “We are here again, we have seen for yourselves, the Lekki Deep Sea Port, a Build, Own, Operate and Transfer concern, is a massive project, a game-changer and a pacesetter. It is the deepest seaport in Nigeria and West Africa, and that in itself is a unique advantage. It covers a land area of 90 hectares and it has a concession period of 45 years.”
He continued:“It is a consortium that includes China Harbour Engineering Company, Tolaram, Lagos State Government, Nigerian Ports Authority and Lekki Port Investment Holding Inc. I called it a game-changer because of the impact it will have on the nation’s economy and the jobs it will create, among others. The investment is huge: 1.53 billion dollars on fixed assets and 800 million dollars on construction.
”But the aggregate impact has been put at 361 billion dollars in 45 years, which will be over 200 times the cost of building it. In addition, it will create 169,972 jobs and bring revenues totalling 201 billion dollars to the state and FG through taxes, royalties and duties.
He added that “The direct and induced business revenue impact is estimated at 158 billion dollars, in addition to a qualitative impact on manufacturing, trade and commercial services sector. Beyond that, when it begins operation in the last quarter of this year, it will make it possible for Nigeria to regain the maritime business that was lost to ports in Togo, Cote d’Ivoire and Ghana. It is also a big boost
to Nigeria in its quest to take advantage of the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA).
Lai Mohammed concluded by saying that “A major advantage we have to leverage is transshipment. With this port, Nigeria will become a transshipment hub and the revenue we are currently losing to our neighboring countries will come here. That’s big.’’
The Minister is really impressed and revealed his utmost satisfaction and gratitude towards what he’s seen going on at the Lekki port. It will not only boost the economy of the maritime sector of the nation, but also improve the overall economy at all levels of the country.
It is 21st century and it is only proper that the country be on the cutting-edge of modernised development. The Lekki Deep Seaport is a model to Seaports across Nigeria, Sub-saharan Africa and the entire West Africa. Not only is it automated, but its grand style, magnitude and depth makes it one of a kind amongst equal.
Upon completion in December 2022, the Seaport will not only boost the economy of the maritime sector, but that of the nation at large; attract more foreign investors, provide ground for extended cargo shipment and more importantly, create about 170,000 job opportunities in the country.
The Lekki Deep Seaport Is Truly A Game Changer.