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Nigeria: Ports’ Cargo Throughput Increased by 10% in 2011

Monday, 20 February 2012 | 11:00
Cargo throughput at the nation's seaports increased from 74,910,284 metric tonnes in 2010 to 82,763,384 metric tonnes in 2011, indicating a 10 per cent increase over the previous year, the Nigerian Ports Authority has disclosed.
The increase in both ship and cargo traffic at the seaports has been attributed to the aggressive reforms being carried out by the federal government and its agencies.
Managing Director of NPA, Mr. Omar Suleiman, told THISDAY that there has been a tremendous improvement in the way business is conducted at the ports than was the case prior to their concession.
Suleiman said that while container and general cargo vessels waited as long as between two weeks and one month before discharging consignments and leaving, it now takes a matter of days.
He explained that this explains the continued increase in shipping and cargo traffic coming into the country as shown in the daily Shipping Position report released by the NPA.
The NPA boss said, “The tremendous increase in both shipping and cargo traffic is as a result of the concessions, the operational indices have gotten better. The shipping waiting time has gotten better.
“Before ships use to wait up to 15 days, but now ships don't wait more than 3-4 days. The turn-around time in the container terminal, with bigger vessels is about 2 days for containers and about 5-6 days for general cargo which used to be nearly a month.”
Suleiman explained that when vessels come into the ports and discharge easily, it encourages them to continue to make return trips to the ports.
“When vessels are able to come and discharge faster and leave, definitely the rate of vessels coming in and out will increase. Even the cargo handling used to be about 45 days but it is now about 25 days.
“We know it is still not good, but we are working on it. All these help more vessels coming in and higher cargo throughput being achieved,” he told THISDAY.
He said the NPA was working hard to ensure that the nation's ports are run efficiently as is the case in other parts of the world, adding that the target of the management is to make Nigerian ports a maritime hub in West and Central Africa.
He disclosed that so much has been done in addressing the issue of piracy, a development, which according to him, has contributed in boosting cargo and shipping traffic.
The General Manager, Public Affairs of the NPA, Chief Michael Ajayi, in a statement sent to THISDAY, said cargo throughput handled in the ports increased from 74,910,284 metric tonnes in 2010 to 82,763,384 metric tonnes in 2011 indicating a 10 per cent increase.
A breakdown showed that liquefied natural gas (LNG) shipment in the year under review stood at 22,277,883 metric tonnes, a growth of 15 per cent over the 2010 figure of 19,369,047metric tonnes.
General cargo shipment in 2010 increased from 9,047,030 metric tonnes to 13,284,965 metric tonnes in 2011, showing a 46.8 per cent increase. Dry bulk cargo, Ajayi said, increased from 11,858,121 metric tonnes in 2010 to 12,877,468 metric tonnes in 2011, reflecting an 8.5 per cent increase.
The statement added that the refined petroleum products in the year under review was 21,527,299 metric tonnes, reflecting an increase of 19.3 per cent over the 2010 figure of 18,047,842 metric tonnes.
Laden container throughput was 817,246 TEUs, amounting to a 22.2 per cent increase over the 2010 figure of 668,697 TEUs, while the empty containers in the year under review was 596,030 TEUs, showing a 29.7 per cent increase over the 2010 figure of 459,474 TEUs.
Vehicular traffic in 2011 was 231,423units, showing a 23.3 per cent increase over the 2010 figure of 187,635 units.
Ajayi also added that the remarkable improvements witnessed in the ports can be attributed to the improved port infrastructure developments and rehabilitation carried out by NPA.
Source: This Day

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