The Managing Director, Nigerian Ports Authority, Mohammed Bello-Koko, has expressed readiness to boost Calabar port by giving tariff reliefs to importers using the port.
Bello-Koko, who said this recently in Calabar when he visited the palace of the Obong of Calabar, Edidem Ekpo Okon Abasi Otu V, also lamented that draft limitations had made the port inefficient.
He said that importers patronising other neighbouring ports due to the challenges faced at Calabar port must be brought back, even as he disclosed that the port had come back to life as a vessel berthed at Ecomarine Terminal discharging over 200 trucks and equipment.”
The NPA boss argued that his mandate was to ensure that the Calabar Port was dredged, saying draft limitations had made the port inefficient.
“We are ready to give tariff reliefs to ensure that porters bring in more cargoes into Calabar port because the more cargoes we have in Calabar, Delta and Warri ports, the less congestion in other ports and more economic activities at the Calabar port. We know one of the problems of Calabar port is dredging which has created draft limitations. The essence is to ensure we dredge the channel because it has become a hindrance to economic activities.”
Bello-Koko further said that the agency would prioritise the rehabilitation of ports, especially the eastern port, stressing that operators had been asked to market the terminal.
“We will prioritise the rehabilitation of the ports, especially eastern ports. We have told the terminal operators that they should market the terminal and should go to importers to use the port so that they won’t go to Cameroon anymore,” he said.
The NPA boss also appealed to the Obong on the need to prevail on his subjects, especially those at the riverine areas, to stop vandalising navigational buoys.
According to him, the navigational buoys were removed from the waters and used as scrap metals, which was inimical to vessel safety.