Thursday, July 29, 2021

    French agency partners NPA on port infrastructure expansion

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    Lagos, July 13, 2021 The Agence Française de Development (AFD), a public sector funding agency promoted by the French Government, says it is ready to support the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) in her quest to modernise and expand port infrastructure to ease the cost of port-related businesses.
    To this effect, a high-level team from AFD and the Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA), met with the management of NPA on Tuesday to hold discussions.
    A statement from NPA indicated that the discussions centred on credit support for port infrastructure development and other critical transport assets in Lagos State.
    The statement signed by Mr Olaseni Alakija, NPA’s General Manager, Corporate Strategy and Communications, quoted the outfit’s Acting Managing Director, Muhammed Bello -Koko, as saying that NPA would welcome every support toward retooling and upgrading port infrastructure to world class status.
    It also quoted him as telling the AFD officials that NPA would collaborate with the French agency as its credit support did not require sovereign guarantee and had a flexible moratorium and repayment plan.
    The Acting Managing Director also informed the AFD delegation that NPA recently met with the Federal Ministry of Transportation and Terminal Operators where discussions centred on ways of funding port renewal projects, especially at the Lagos Ports Complex in Apapa and the Tin-Can Island Ports Complex (TICP).
    The AFD team, led by David Margonsztern, told the NPA team that it operates a credit facility agreement with the Lagos State Government, adding that an AFD team was currently carrying out an Implementation Support Mission on Lagos State Strategic Transport Master Plan (LSTMP).
    “Our visit to the NPA is therefore to discuss funding opportunities to support port infrastructure renewal under the Lagos Urban Transport Sector programme,” Margonsztern explained.
    He said that AFD would partner with the NPA on infrastructure expansion and modernisation programmes in Lagos State, especially the development of facilities like truck parks and improvement of access corridors to the port.
    “We believe that this will benefit residents and businesses in Lagos as well as the Nigerian economy generally,” he said.
    The NPA helmsman, while commending the joint team from AFD and LAMATA for the visit, assured the team that NPA would continue to embrace actions that would position the port system in Nigeria on the path of sustainable growth.

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