A cross section of tank farm owners and operators in Lagos has endorsed the springing up of similar facilities in other parts of the country. Even though some refused to comment, those who spoke commended the construction of tank farms in Calabar, Cross Rivers state.
Managing director of the Nigerian Ports Authority Mallam Abdusallam Mohammed had recently told the Governor of Cross Rivers state, Senator Liyel Imoke that the organization has received about 50 applications for construction of tank farms within the state alone.
But, stakeholders who spoke to Shipping Position Weekly last week on the development categorically expressed support for it saying that it will create more job opportunities and bring about more development to these parts of the country where the facilities are being constructed.
Apart from this, they also stated that construction of the facility in other states of the country will also ensure better circulation of petroleum products throughout the country and this will further cub the problem of scarcity.
However, as a result of the fact that more than 90 percent of the nation’s petroleum product consumption comes through the tank farms in Lagos state alone, the shift of tank farms to other states will ease the pressure that Lagos state has been facing in terms of traffic congestion and so on.
Head of corporate affairs of Conoil , Mr. Abiodun Azeez told Shipping Position Weekly stated that shifting of tank farms to other parts of the country is a welcome idea since there are ports in other parts of the country were they are being constructed, “the tank farms are mainly used for storage of the different product and constructing them in other states simply means that the cargoes or vessels have to go there and deliver” he said.
However, some operators have also argued that Nigeria has not been able to fully utilize the capacity of the number of depots that are in Lagos alone. According to them, there are more than enough tank farms in Lagos state that are capable of supplying the whole country if well utilized.
Mr Bala Danmanu, a top manager with an indigenous marketing company, Rahamaniya Oil and Gas told our correspondence that “we have enough depots here but the capacity of the depots we are utilizing is very low, the focus should not be about the number of the depots, but how they are being utilized”. He also disclosed that operating tank farms in Lagos comes with a lot of challenges, because, according to him, “most of the depots are always empty”.
Corroborating Bala, the manager of Integrated Oil and Gas, Engineer Tony Iheanacho also stressed that Lagos state has enough tank farms already and with the completion of new facilities in other parts of the state; especially, in the Epe and Lekki axis, that is enough to meet the demands of the whole country.