Mercury Maritime Concession Company (MMCC), has secured a provisional approval from the Federal Government through the Ministry of Transportation to construct $2.9 billion Escravos Seaport Industrial Complex (ESIC-1) in Delta State.
The project will be home to eight other projects including a deep seaport, a free trade zone, a crude oil refinery and gas complex and nature conservation park.
It was learnt that one of the benefits of the project is to promote massive collateral investments in commerce, industry, mining, power, housing, recreation and tourism, etc estimated at $50 billion.
Speaking at a maritime stakeholders forum in Lagos over the weekend, Chairman of MMCC, Rear Admiral Andrew Okoja, said that the project, which is maritime driven project would generate about 40,000 employment and eliminate criminalities such as piracy in the region.
He said the Escravos seaport project, which would be on 30,000 hectares of land in South West of Warri in Delta State, would decongest the Lagos ports and bring in more people into maritime industry, saying that all the industry in the world has something to do with maritime, as it carries 90 per cent of the world’s resources.
“We have gotten a provisional approval from the Federal Government. They told us to lodge in $1 billion and to lodge in your money, you have to go through some certain protocols before you bring out that money. We are to lodge in the money as capacity to funding not that we are going to give the Federal Government.
“The provisional approval was given through the Ministry of Transportation and we were given a condition, pay $1 billion, we will give you a license. It is like when you need a land, you register and you are ask to pay this amount and after paying it, you would be given the land,” he added.
However, he said the project will be ready in five years, adding that it would boost economic and national development of Nigeria particularly, Delta State.
Also speaking at the event, Engr. Stephen Kema Okoja, said Escravos seaport is conceptualized as a modern deep seaport that would handle container Ro-Ro vessels, specialized cargo and general cargo.
He said, “The seaport is designed to primarily serve ESIC-1 and also support Nigeria’s regular international seaborne trade, thus accentuating the contribution of Delta ports to Nigeria’s economic development as well as boosting contributions of Delta State seaports Nigeria’s International seaborne trade from its present to three per cent share.”
“Project conceptualized to take advantage of the quick and direct access of ESIC-1 Seaport to the Atlantic ocean as its multimodal transport access to approximately 80 per cent of hinterland Nigeria and it’s landlock countries to transform Delta State into a regional multi-modal transport hub of West Africa,” he added.
Speaking on the specific benefits of ESIC-1, Prof. Charles Asenime, said the central location of ESIC-1 grants Delta State direct multimodal transport accessibility to 70 per cent of Nigerian landmass (four (4) geo-political zones including Abuja) and the littoral nations of the world.
“The development of ESIC-1 project will transform the coastal/foreshore line between Benin river and Forcados river into prime lands for seafront/sea-view property development. Such development will check ocean incursion on Delta State coastal land arising from earth warming/sea rising effects caused by depletion of atmospheric ozone layer.
“ESIC-1 Seaport will substantially eliminate congestion in the Lagos seaports. It will provide solution to the accessibility and low-draft disincentive to mariners that are associated with sailing to Warri Port, Burutu, Koko, Onitsha, and Port Harcourt ports. Will directly open up Delta State and five other geo-political zones of the Nation to International trade, commerce and industry,” he said.
culled from sunnewsonline
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