By Innocent Orok
A major milestone is being witnessed as the negotiation meeting between the Federal Government and CRCC, the preferred bidder for the construction of the Ibadan Inland Dry Port is nearing completion.
Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC) is the guarantor to the concession which a capacity of 80,000 TEUs. The Ibadan Dry Port is to be constructed on the basis of Public Private Partnership (PPP) agreement in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital.
A statement frim Rakiya Zubairu, Head, Public Relations of the NSC said on completion, the facility is expected to contribute to addressing the problem of port congestion and gridlock in Apapa, Lagos State as it will be designated as a port of destination where cargo will be consolidated for import and export, especially in the South Western part of the Country.
The port when completed will also attract other users and provide a competitive cargo sorting centre, bulk breaking as well as cargo-tracking and truck management services.
The project, which has been estimated to cost US$94,000,000.00 (N43,240,000,000.00), will boost employment in Oyo State and other cities in it’s environs.
The Lagos-Kano standard gauge railway currently under construction is been aligned to the proposed dry port, making it easy to convey cargo from the seaports in Lagos and to all destinations along the route.
The negotiations emphasised the utilisation of local content at each stage of development and operation of the facility.
Having concluded this stage, an Updated Full Business Case Compliance report will be produced. A draft agreement will be presented to the Federal Ministry of Justice and sent to the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission, (ICRC)for vetting, after which the Minister of Transportation will present the agreement to the Federal Executive Council. The concessionaire will then be taken to the site for sod-turning. It is expected that construction will commence immediately after the ceremony. The timeline for completion is twelve months.
The negotiation was moderated by the Federal Ministry Of Transportation led by the acting Permanent Secretary and the Director, Maritime Services, Auwalu Suleiman, the Director-General of Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), Engr. Chidi Izuwa. Amb. Jummai Katagum who represented the Federal Ministry of Finance was also part of the four days negotiation.
Also present at the event was Mrs. Olubamiwo Adeosun, Secretary to Government of Oyo State. The preferred bidder CRCC was led by the Deputy Managing Director, Jacques Liao.
The Executive Secretary/CEO of Nigerian Shippers’ Council, Hassan Bello expressed satisfaction with the proceedings. He disclosed that all parties expressed firm commitment to the actualization of the project.
Facilitation of the meeting was enabled by the transaction advisors, Aminu Dikko and Mohammed Kumalia. The negotiations will be concluded soon.