The management of the Nigerian Ports Authority says it has concluded plans to deploy equipment worth over N1bn in the Calabar Port, in Cross River State.
The measure, according to the Managing Director, NPA, Ms Hadiza Usman, is aimed at boosting efficiency, security and making the port attractive to business.
Calabar port is one of the key ports in the nation under the management of the NPA, with stakeholders saying that it has been developed into an ultra-modern port system since the current management took the mantle of office.
Speaking at a stakeholders’ meeting organised by NPA at the Calabar Port Complex on Thursday, Usman, who was represented by the General Manager, Marine and Operations, Mr. Joshua Asanga, said some tug boats, pilot cutters and other equipment worth several millions of dollars would be deployed to boost efficiency at the port.
The NPA managing director said the four consultants engaged by the agency for the Bathymetric survey of the channel leading to the Calabar Port had concluded their assignment so that the dredging of the channel would commence.
She urged investors to take advantage of the strategic location of the port to boost export and assured them of the Federal Government’s commitment to dredging the channel to meet their expectations.
Usman assured the stakeholders and investors that adequate depth of the channel leading to the port would be dredged to accommodate big ocean going vessels and that adequate security would be provided.
She urged government agencies at the port to key into the Federal Government’s policy on easy of doing business, boost quick cargo clearance and facilitate trade.
One of the stakeholders at the meeting, Chief Michael Davies, commended the NPA for repositioning the Calabar Port for greater efficiency, and urged other stakeholders to collaborate with the agency in its efforts to make the port a hub of maritime activities.
A clearing agent, Mr. Sunday Alfred, stated that the deployment of the tug boats and the pilot cutters would assist the port in boosting revenue generation.
The Port Manager, Mr. Funmilayo Olotu, gave kudos to the management of the NPA for the support so far received and assured the stakeholders that flat bottom vessels would continue to call at the port to deliver their cargoes.
At the meeting were representative of the host community, importers, clearing agents, terminal operators, investors and representatives of security agencies like the Police, Customs, Immigration and the Navy.