The United States Consul General in Nigeria Claire Pierangelo has said the Free Zone and Lekki Deepwater Sea Port represent great strides forward in Nigeria, despite the many challenges businesses face in the country.
Claire Pierangelo made the disclosure when she led a delegation comprising representatives of the America Business Council and United States Consulate General, Lagos to assess the Lagos Free Zone (LFZ) and under-construction Lekki Deep Sea Port.
The purpose of the visit was to review the benefits of the initiatives for US businesses and showcase those that have already availed themselves to them.
Pierangelo said the projects have, “very systematically and thoughtfully, created an enabling environment where many other businesses can thrive.”
She commended the leadership of Tolaram Group, the promoter of LFZ, for embarking on such an “amazing and very ambitious project,” which has the capacity to transform the Nigerian economy and unlock new opportunities for global trade in sub-Saharan Africa reiterating the commitment of the US Mission in Nigeria to facilitate investments for the mutual benefit of both nations.
Mr. Dipo Faulkner, President of the American Business Council, alluding to Tolaram Group’s joint ventures, remarked that Kellogg’s and Colgate-Palmolive are “two key America brands thriving in Nigeria despite the numerous business challenges” and encouraged more United States companies to see the LFZ as a solution to overcoming these challenges.
Mr. Dinesh Rathi, CEO of the Tolaram Group, expressed his appreciation to the Consul General and her delegation for the visit.
He said the company will conduct business for the benefit of both Nigeria and its stakeholders in a sustainable and environmentally friendly manner and urged the Nigerian government to intensify its efforts to boost the viability of foreign businesses within the country.
The $1.5 billion Lekki Deep Sea Port and associated LFZ is an integral part of the federal and state government’s effort to capture trade in West Africa. The first phase of the port is scheduled to become operational in 2022.
Upon completion, the port will have a container terminal covering an area of 50 hectares with two container berths capable of accommodating ultra-large ships transporting over 14,000 containers.