About four months after the commencement of movement of containers from the Apapa Port Complex by sea to the Ikorodu Lighter Terminal in barges for collection by trailers to other parts of the country, Connect Maritime Services Limited operating the service says it has continued to record growth in the terminal’s containerized, bulk cargo haulage business.
The Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Connect Maritime Services Limited, Edeme Kelikume, was quoted in a statement on Wednesday as saying that the movement of containers in barges from Apapa port to the Ikorodu Lighter Terminal, which started in slow pace of tens had grown to an estimated 2,000.
He said that the movement of cargo into the terminal was an approach aimed at decongesting the Apapa port and environs.
He listed firms using the terminal to include blue chip companies, multinationals and fast-moving consumer goods trading and manufacturing companies moving goods comprising mainly of solid minerals and agriculture commodity exports.
Kelikume said embracing such intermodal logistic solutions would ease the gridlock in Lagos.
“Several times, ‘cosmetic’ attempts have been made to clear the Apapa traffic, but as soon as the media attention dies down, the gridlock creeps back. It is estimated that the economy loses about N20bn daily due to the gridlock,” he said.
Figures from the Nigeria Ports Authority show that container traffic statistics at the country’s seaports have more than tripled since 2007.
“This ordinarily should be good news as it is an indication that the economy is expanding. However, in the case of Nigeria, this has become a challenge because the infrastructure to support this growth in cargo has actually deteriorated.”