A participant in the just concluded Abuja International Trade Fair, Dr Nuhu Maksha, on Tuesday underscored the need for rail and dry ports connectivity to enhance economic growth of the country.
Maksha, the Chief Executive, Gasha Production and Services Ltd., while commending the Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC) for participating at the fair said that rail connectivity to dry ports would reduce pressure on the Nigerian roads.
The trade fair had its theme as: “Sustainable Financing and Taxation”.
Maksha said that moving some goods and farm produce by road is becoming more challenging, adding that Nigeria is endowed with so many natural resources not being utilised presently.
He added that rail connectivity to dry ports would make the road last longer as well as enhance the economic growth of the country.
“I know of a time when goods were transported from the South Eastern part of this country to North Eastern part, precisely from Lokoja to Yola through waterways.
“Juxtaposing that on the present scenario and with the increase in population, the problem with our road network, one will think that presently the waterways particularly is under utilised.
“I’m interested in seeing how the Council will help farmers move their produce from these places through dry ports.
“Frankly speaking, transportation by roads is becoming more challenging, it is taking a toll on our roads with heavy movement of goods making the roads not to last long.
‘If we can diversify a way off the roads, it will be economically wise,” he said.
Maksha said the country would not reap the economic benefits of the dry ports if it relies on road services only.
The NSC is vested with the responsibility of protecting the interest of Nigerian Shippers – importers and exporters.
It also creates space for some members of the Niger Shippers Association as a way of encouraging the participation of shippers at the trade fair.
The 18th edition of the 2023 Abuja International Trade Fair which started from Sept. 28 and ended this Monday was organised by Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry.