Akwa Ibom deep seaport to take off in April

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Peace Obi

The $2.5 billion Ibom Deep Seaport, a public-private partnership (PPP) project would become a reality on or before April 2019.

The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Infrastructure, Imeh Okon, disclosed this during a Stakeholders Retreat on Public-Private Partnership (PPP), stating that the project would change the landscape of infrastructure in Nigeria.

“It will have solutions to traffic congestion in Lagos port because those goods that normally go to Lagos will come here,” she said on Friday.

“I can assure you before April, the contract for Ibom Deep Seaport will be signed and the approved consortium will start immediately.”

She said that the country has spent N2.7 trillion on infrastructure development in the last three years, adding that the sum of N100 billion had been injected into rail projects.

“What we have done as a government is to go back to the 25-year master plan on the rail sector. All that you are seeing right now is in terms of rail infrastructure as a result of the master plan that was on the ground.

“The challenge we have seen is revenue; because we are largely dependent on oil to generate revenue and the price of oil has affected government spending.

“So, we are going to partner with the private sector to develop most of our priority infrastructure projects.”

In his remarks, the Acting Director-General, Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), Chidi Izuwah, noted that infrastructure deficit was the major challenge to the nation’s development.

“The President is committed to developing infrastructure, without infrastructure, we cannot have inclusive growth and development,” he said.

“The stakeholders’ conference is to re-define our strategies and create investment to develop infrastructure across all parts of Nigeria.”

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