Managing Director, Nigerian Ports Authority, Hadiza Bala Usman

The Nigerian Ports Authority has said that its ability to receive and successfully handle the Egina Floating, Production Storage and Offloading FPSO in the nation’s harbours was an indication that the authority is more than ever before repositioned to handle higher responsibilities.

Recall that history was made in the week when Egina FPSO was officially received into the Lagos harbours at the Lagos Deep Offshore Logistic Base LADOL, which houses the Free Trade Zone after a 90-day long voyage from the Samsung Shipyard Heavy Industry located in the Republic of South Korea to Nigeria

Managing Director of the authority, Hadiza Bala Usman, who spoke at the official reception of the platform, said that the successful handling of the project showcases the preparedness of the NPA at taking on greater responsibilities and challenges in the new port era, especially in terms of availability of top graded equipment.

This is mostly in the areas of tug boats, safe navigable channels and the availability of highly skilled personnel as well as safe and secure shipping environment that facilitates the ease of doing business within the nation’s territorial waters.

The Managing Director, who spoke with newsmen shortly after the event, the assured major stakeholders in the industry and the general public that Federal Government, would continue to provide the right business environment for the oil and gas industry to thrive through efficient port systems.

“We promise to support the growth of trade relations by collaborative efforts with clients who aspire to land their cargoes directly at the Free Trade Zones”, she further assured.

She also reiterated the commitment of the Federal Government in the area of promoting local content policy in the country in view of the numerous benefits accruable and most especially taking control of the oil and has hub in Nigeria and sub-Saharan Africa.

“Today’s event is an attestation of the readiness and improved operational efficiency of the NPA in handling vessels of any size within the Nigerian territorial waters.

“The management of the NPA would in the coming months improve in the area of capacity building and infrastructural development with a view to providing an enabling environment for an improved customer’s efficiency in all the Ports across the nation”, she also pledged.

Chief Operating Officer and the Base Manager of LADOL, Mr. Leyton Daniel, while speaking at the event, said that the coming of Egina FPSO has brought about limitless opportunities in a diverse range of economic activities

According to him, the Egina which has the capacity to last 40 years under the water, has 200 crew members on board and spent exactly three months in the course of her voyage from Busan in South Korea to Lagos, having called only at Mauritius, and Cape Town in South Africa.

Daniel however commended the management of NPA for its tremendous support and the provision of logistics that aided the realisation of the objectives of the project.

Meanwhile, Managing Director Total Upstream Nigeria Limited, Mr. Nicholas Teraz also affirmed that the successful arrival of the Egina FPSO was an indication of human and technical capacity potential available in Nigeria, adding that handling such vessel weighing over 200,000 tonnes was a great task.

According to him, the arrival of Egina would further enhance a more improved collaboration between the managements of the NPA, Total and LADOL, especially in the area of knowledge transfer and other forms of partnerships.

Part of economic benefits of the of the Egina FPSO project include the provide the enabling environment to checkmate capital flight, encourage technological transfer and create employment opportunities much as it is a clear point of increased revenue generation to the nation.

The project is in line with the efforts of the Federal Government at liberalising the oil and gas sector in the country.

Recall that LADOL had about four years ago began the Egina FPSO integration project at its base in Lagos, which was initially stalled due to some contractual disagreement with Total Nigeria, which led to a court case that was later resolved amicably.