The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), has assured that the renewed concession agreements for five terminal at the nation’s seaports that expired in 2021 are almost ready.
The Managing Director NPA, Mohammed Bello Koko who made this known recently during a chat with journalists in Lagos, added that under the new agreement, the terminal operators would be more responsible for the maintenance of Quays, Fenders and allied matters such as port illumination.
According to him, the NPA is concluding discussions on the terms of the agreement and once that is sorted, the report will be sent to the Bureau of Public Enterprise (BPE), Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), Federal Ministry of Transportation (FMOT) and the Federal Ministry of Justice (FMOJ).
Specifically, the NPA boss stated, “The agreement were signed in 2006 and while some have expired, some are still running. But, the expired ones are being renewed and what we are looking at is what will be in the best interest of the country. What was agreed in 2006 is no more tenable, the demands of the country and of the NPA are different from what they were in 2006.”
He added, “The federal government through the NPA is resolved to hold Terminal Operators more accountable under the new agreement, on maintenance as well as on deployment of modern equipment in sufficient quantity.”
“Two of the expired leases have agreed to invest in the development of the TinCan Port. The need to discuss with the other terminal operators whose leases have not expired became important, since development will entail the whole berth.
“It is these fine details that are being worked on, but I believe within the month, they will be finalized and sent to FMOT, FMOJ, BPE, ICRC accordingly” Bello-Koko said.
The NPA boss stressed that the NPA management under his leadership would continue to uphold global best practice and ensure the best deal is secured for Nigeria.
He added that the new agreement will ensure that the operators are held accountable in their commitment to invest in port infrastructure to ensure efficiency.
“On the whole, the renewal of these leases has afforded NPA the opportunity to take a closer look at the Port Modernization project of government, and preliminary agreements together with the renewal documents will be communicated to FMOT in few days’ time,” he added.