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The Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Dr (Mrs) Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, disclosed this in Lagos, during her visit to the Lagos ports, noting that a well rehabilitated rail tracks within the ports would no doubt ensure easy movement of goods in and out of the ports.
The minister, who was accompanied by both the Ministers of Transport, Senator Idris Umar and her Works counterpart, Mike Onolemenem, during the tour of port facilities, said government was determined to create a platform which would ensure the growth of an efficient port system that is capable of engendering real economic prosperity, igniting more job opportunities, especially for the teeming youths.
Pointing out that the Lagos State government had also been co-opted into the overall dream of a transformed port agenda, Okonjo-Iweala tasked every Nigerian, particularly the ports stakeholders, to contribute their own quota to the economic prosperity of the country.
“The President is interested in making the ports work; that was why he set up the task force to create an enabling environment for port users.
“The president set up the task force which includes all of us as a team to try and work to improve port operations. We are glad that working with the governor of Lagos State and his commissioners has helped to make the ports work better, faster and you can see what has been accomplished.
“We need to clean the place, repair the bridges and get the whole place in order so that we can have a more orderly passage of traffic and people around the port area. We hope to continue with it so that we can sanitise the area for port users to have access to move their goods in and out of the port.
“We will also activate the rail, strengthen the bridges, repair the roads because that is why we are here with the ministers of works and transport,” she concluded, highlighting that her team was scheduled to also meet with other relevant stakeholders like the shipping companies, terminal operators, Nigeria Customs Service, freight forwarders, transporters and the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) with a view to carrying them along in the process of making the ports more efficient and cost effective.
In his response, the Transport Minister, Senator Idris Umar, assured that his ministry would leave no stone unturned in a bid to ensure that the nation’s ports were actually made more efficient and cost effective.Share