Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari inaugurated the country’s first deepwater port on Monday 23rd January. Located in Lekki, east of the economic capital Lagos, it will contribute to the country’s economic growth.
The US$1.5 billion Lekki Deep Sea Port, funded by China, is the largest seaport in Nigeria and one of the largest in West Africa. It is expected to revolutionise the way goods are transported and traded in Nigeria and will create hundreds of thousands of jobs. The project is a joint venture between the Nigerian government, through the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), the Lagos State government, the Tolarams Group (owner of the Lagos Free Zone) and the China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC).
Its building was initiated to reduce the pressure on the 2 main ports of the country (Apapa and Tin Can Island), considered as the most congested port platforms of the continent. Indeed, of the six major seaports in Nigeria, only two handle most of the country’s imports. This results in a massive loss of revenue, as shipments are often diverted to other West African countries.