NIGERIA’s leading container terminal, APM Terminals Apapa has expressed support for the Federal Government’s drive to connect the Apapa Port to the Lagos-Ibadan standard gauge rail line.
Speaking during a visit to the terminal by the Minister of State for Transportation, Senator Gbemisola Saraki, Country Managing Director of APM Terminals Nigeria, Mr. Klaus Laursen, said that linking the port to the rail line will facilitate cargo delivery.
Mr. Laursen advocated a multimodal transportation system to evacuate cargo from the port to avoid port congestion.
He said APM Terminals Apapa first restored the rail in the port in 2013 leading to the movement of containers from Apapa port to Kano and Kaduna three times a week.
He said connecting the port to the new Lagos-Ibadan standard gauge rail line will offer a cost advantage to consignees and reduce pressure on the road.
Speaking with journalists on the sideline of the visit, Mr. Laursen said in addition to supporting the use of the railway to evacuate cargo, APM Terminals Apapa has encouraged the use of barges to move boxes from the terminal.
He also said that APM Terminals Apapa has been transformed into a world-class facility, which the country can be proud of.
“Over the past few years, APM Terminals Apapa has been on a remarkable transformation journey. We have led with a strong ambition to become a world-class terminal operator. We enable access to jobs, products, foods, and medicine.
“For us, it is not just about moving containers around; we are a heartbeat for the society and we create value for our customers,” he said.
On her part, the Minister of State for Transportation, Senator Gbemisola Saraki, said arrangements have been made to remove the Customs building housing a radioactive scanner that had been obstructing the extension of the rail track to the port quay.
“By the end of this month, we want to ensure that the removal of this Customs facility which is on the rail track is resolved. The goal is to have this track operational by the end of this month,” the Minister said.