Lagos shippers have warned that the high cost of transporting containers from Lagos port to the Kaduna Inland Dry Port (KIDP) was frustrating importers interest to patronise the dryport.
This was disclosed by the President, Shippers’ Association Lagos State (SALS) Rev. Jonathan Nicol in Lagos. The shippers’ boss comment which was coming one year after President Muhammadu Buhari commissioned the first Inland Container Depot, in Kaduna lamented that the high cost of transportation from Lagos ports to the hinterland has frustrated importers interest to patronise the Kaduna Inland Dry Port (KIDP).
SALS president noted that transfer of containers from Lagos port to Kaduna drypoet via road cost over one million naira for importers thus not workable. According to him, the Kaduna Dryport has no business advantage to the importers, hence shippers are not ready to run at a loss.
He said, “To transfer containers from Lagos to Kaduna by road is expensive. Even the local cost at a time was N1,000,000 to a container and that is not the end. The importer will go there, perform all the normal processes and then ferry all containers to his warehouse.
“When you look at all this factor, you find out that these are some of the reasons importers are not ready to use the Kaduna Inland Dry Port. It is better for them to clear their containers from the port in Lagos and then ferry them to the hinterland than taking to Kaduna for clearance.”
According to Nicol, government has failed to encourage shippers in line with the executive order on the ease of doing business. Nicol noted that the federal government failed to maintain and build infrastructures in the sector, stressing the need for the creation of a maritime ministry.
The SALS boss further said with the establishment of maritime ministry, the challenges that has bedevilled maritime industry would be addressed. He further decried policy Summersault by government in the maritime industry saying appointment of half-baked chief executive officers in some of the agencies has made the industry to suffer many setbacks.
“The establishment of a maritime ministry would lessen the burden of the ministry of transportation and that is key for shippers to bring in more vessel. “Though, ministry of transportation is doing her best but the country ports can function better when a ministry of maritime is created. He called on the government to put the necessary infrastructures in place to aid the workability of the eastern ports.”