By Gboyega Oni
The contributions of the port industry to the growth of the nation’s economy has been lauded by the President of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), Dr. (Mrs.) Nike Akande (CON who called on the relevant the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) and other government agencies to ensure an enabling environment for an efficient port system.
Akande gave the commendation in her welcome address at the NPA’s Special Day during the ongoing 2017 International Trade Fair organized by the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) in Lagos.
“The ports are critical to the economic life of this country and this makes it imperative that agencies managing the nation’s ports and maritime Infrastructure must continually work towards a better regulatory and operational environment that guarantees Ports efficiency across the country. The issues around port operations are well known by the agencies concerned with port management in Nigeria and we acknowledge the efforts of government towards improving the efficiency of the Ports,” Akande said.
While speaking at the ceremony, the Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Hadiza Bala Usman said her management was ready to invest resources in the area of capacity building and an efficient port system towards the growth of the nation’s economy and global industrialization.
She said developing nations of the world have come to the realization that industrialization is a channel through which a nation’s economic recovery short and long term is dependent upon. To this end all hand must be on deck by all concerned towards finding a long lasting solution to these perennial problems facing our nation in the area of starvation, diseases and unemployment among others.
Usman, who was represented by the General Manager Corporate and Strategic Communications, Abdullahi Goje, said NPA management is assiduously working towards making the nation’s seaports a safe haven for investors within the sub-Sahara Africa by providing a conducive environment for all in line with International best practices.
“There is currently an Executive Order on 24 hour Port Operations and the Authority has placed all the necessary mechanisms to ensure the realization of the Order,’’ Usman said.
In his speech, the Chairman, Trade Promotion of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce, Mrs. Sola Oyetayo charged all stakeholders to ensure a total rejuvenation in their policies in the area of 24 hour port operations in the ports, 48 hours cargo clearance at the ports including improvement of traffic within the access roads among others.
He commended the NPA Managing Director for her passion towards the participation of NPA at the fair and that NPA participation has been adding value to trade promotion over the years.
Highlight of the occasion was the presentation of plaque of recognition to the Managing Director for her contributions to the development of Nigeria economy in the Maritime sector. The theme of the event is ‘’Promoting Industrialization For Economic Recovery And Sustainable Growth.”