The Managing Director of Lekki Port LFTZ Enterprise Limited, (LPLEL) promoters of the Lekki Deep Sea Port, Mr Du Ruogang has that the company was committed to ensuring that the port is completed in 2022.
Speaking during a media tour of the port last week, the Managing Director of the port said ahead of its 15 months’ target period to deliver Nigeria’s first private sector-driven deep sea port, Nigerian Ports Authority has commenced initial marine services on site.
He informed that five Ships To Shore (STS) cranes and 15 Rubber Tyred Gantry cranes (RTGs) are being put in place for ease of cargo handling and seamless operations when the port fully commences.
He said the construction work being undertaken by China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) has attained about 51 percent completion with 81 percent of the total purchases sourced locally within Nigeria
Giving technical details on some structures to be put in place in the port, Ruogang said the 45-year concession period which provides for Build Own Operate and Transfer (BOOT), will have three container, three liquid and one dry bulk berths.
The MD also disclosed that work was not stalled on the project even in the face of Covid19 pandemic while explaining the level of equity funding the ongoing port project has gotten
“We have achieved many milestones on the project including the equity infusion of $221m by China Harbour Engineering Company in its capacity as an investor.
“Based on this development, China Harbour is now the majority shareholder in Lekki Port. Also, we were able to satisfy all the conditions precedent for the disbursement of the loan facility from China Development Bank.
“Finally, we have secured the partnership of Lekki Port Free Terminal (CMA) a French company with vast experience worldwide, to run the container terminal when it is operational.
“As at today, I am glad to inform you that the project is at almost 50 per cent completion. You will see an overview of the construction progress shortly, but I am pleased to say that the construction has been going smoothly and we are on course with our timelines and in fact we are targeting an earlier date for commencement of operations.
“We are very proud of our efforts especially so, during a difficult time all over the world due to the negative impact of the pandemic” Ruogang said
Chief Technical Officer of the port, Steven Heukelom also informed that dredging and reclamation activities including the breakwater have attained 55.75 percent completion.
He said so far, 1200 Nigerian workers are engaged in the port with 50 of them from the host community.
Heukelom added that the port has made positive interventions in the host communnity through corporate social responsibility (CSR) in the areas of constructing pedestrian pathway, educational support through its Tolaram Science Challenge and donations of food and items that promote hygiene.
Equity of the Lekki Deep Sea Port which is 75 percent held by Lekki Port Investment Holdings also has the Lagos State Government as 20 percent shareholder while Nigerian Ports Authority has 5 percent shares.
The facility, upon completion and full operation is expected to provide 169,972 jobs and address part of the port needs of Nigeria and neighbouring West African countries with a hub of maritime and ancillary logistics services to be sited within the area.