WACT invests N47bn in Onne, plans e-commerce expansion
By Sylvester Paul://
The Managing Director of West Africa Container Terminal Nigeria, Naved Zafar, has said that the terminal operator, which is owned by APM Terminals, has invested about N47bn in Onne Port, Rivers State, between 2020 and 2022.
This is even as the terminal received the second-largest containership to berth at a Nigerian port, MV Lady Jane.
In a statement, Zafar said that the huge investment by the terminal operator made it possible for Onne Port to be able to receive that size of the vessel.
“Effective coordination by Nigeria Port Authority and the USD112 million (about N47 billion) investment in the terminal by APM Terminals, made it possible to handle very large container vessels.”
He explained that WACT previously made history in August 2020 when it received the largest containership; Maersk Stadelhorn, which has an overall length of 300 meters and the capacity to carry about 10,000 twenty equivalent units to the port in Nigeria.
“Lady Jane is the second largest ship to call at WACT. This is important because as you know, WACT has embarked on a transformation plan since last year with an ambition to become the most efficient and reliable partner to our customers. Declaring a big ship like this is a clear indication of the unwavering trust in our capabilities and an affirmation of the investments that we have made since last year. In line with WACT’s vision of becoming the gateway to East Nigeria and beyond, we continue to stretch our boundaries by investing and expanding our service capabilities to deliver the best-in-class supply chain solutions to both our shipping line customers and the landside customers. The arrival of Lady Jane is the practical manifestation of that commitment,” he said.
Also speaking, the Port Manager of Onne Port, Stanley Magaji Yitnoe, said, “This achievement indicates that container traffic is growing. Last year, container traffic in Onne grew by 31 per cent but with Lady Jane bringing in containers to discharge and to load, including full exports, container traffic is definitely picking up in Onne.”
The Commercial Manager of WACT, Noah Sheriff, said, “It brings additional capacity both on the import and export sides and all categories of our customers stand to benefit. For the import customers, the regular direct services from the Far East coupled with our berthing window protocol, cargoes get here on time and agents/consignees are able to get the cargo to the market quicker using our online platforms. For export customers, Lady Jane provides more slots for export loadings, which is important for the overall economy today. It is a good development for our shipping line customers as well, as we are positioned to accommodate such upgrade on the back of the recent investment,” he said.