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NSC pledges commitment to execution of operation manual for dry port

By Hauwa Ali

Nigerian Shippers’ Council has pledged commitment to strict adherence to the execution of the operation manual launched by the Federal government.

The Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC), Emmanuel Jime, gave the pledge at the launch of the manual in Lagos earlier in the week.

According to him, the agency will uphold the principles of professionalism in handling containers, promote efficient transportation, enhance efficiency at the ports and engender trade facilitation in the country, while assuring that the facilities would be digitalised.

“The strategic importance of producing the manual articulates the step-by-step procedure(s) for receiving, storing, handling and delivery of cargoes as well as highlighting the operations and responsibilities of agencies and timelines for discharging such tasks.

“The operational manual, which has already been launched in Kano in July 21, 2022, will be launch in Port-Harcourt in August 9, 2022, as it provides detailed processes and procedures for the main activities of the Inland dry ports.

“The manual is based on best international practice adapted to suite Nigerian context. Indeed, each dry port will have its owned specialties, organisational implementation, layout constraintsband services offered and would therefore amend aspect of the manual in a case-by-case basis,” he said.

“It may be pertinent to state that this manual would be used as a measure of performance by the regulator (in this case, the Nigerian Shippers Council) and will be subjected to future review to be in tandem with obtainable best practices, upon agreement of the two parties – the operator and the regulator.” He added.

The inland dry ports were set up to deliver shipping services to shippers in non-coastal areas and are located in Isiala-Ngwa (Abia State), Erunmu (Oyo State), Heipang, Jos (Plateau State), Dala (Kano State), Funtua (Katsina State), Jauri (Borno State) and Kaduna (Kaduna State).

On his part, the Managing Director, Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Mohammed Bello-Koko highlights the he need to optimise the inland dry ports since the Lagos seaports are operating beyond their capacity; adding that the effective operations of the IDPs will provide options for shippers and consignees outside Lagos State.

“The effective operations of the IDPs will provide options for shippers and consignees outside Lagos State as it will increase the possibility of export cargoes. The authority will support other government agencies under the Ministry of Transportation to aid the movement of import and export cargoes and boxes in the country.”

Also, the Minister of Transportation, Mua’zu Sambo, who was represented by Ewache Victor, noted that apart from the fact that the dry ports will engender trade flows and advance export of agricultural products, it would also serve as a viable source of revenue for host states.

“It is important to note that apart from its critical importance in facilitating international trade as well as transit cargo to landlocked countries, the inland dry port projects are intended to bring shipping activities closer to shippers in the hinterland and increase cargo throughput, act as a catalyst for improved trade flows, to boost inland trading, promote export of agricultural products, thus leading to multi-product-oriented economy, create employment opportunities that would ultimately stem rural-urban migration, and to act as a source of internally generated revenue to the host states as well as revenue source to the Federal Government,” the minister said.

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