Onne Port Complex, Rivers State
The Federal Government of Nigeria through the Managing Director of Nigeria Ports Authority Ms. Hadiza Bala Usman is considering putting the new phase 4b Onne Seaport complex in the outskirts of Port Harcourt to use.
This information was disclosed by Ms. Usman when she made a familiarization visit to the port complex in Rivers State.
She disclosed that though the Federal government has committed several millions of dollars in to the project she was committed to investing more money to bring it to 100 % completion level.
She however reasoned that because of the low financial capacity of the government in the light of the current recession there is need to design a strategy whereby the port complex new phase 4b which has now attained 25 % completion level can be utilized side by side with the continued development of the remaining part of the Port.
The new Onne Port 4b is designed to handle Floating Production Storage and offloading vessel (FPSO) . It is also bill to handle integration and other construction and industrial activities.
According to Ms. Usman “The project must be put to commercial use in order to bring in the much needed revenue to the government as we commit more resources to ensure its full completion.”
Also speaking at the occasion, the concessionaire of the Port Complex, Deep Offshore Services Nigeria Limited represented by its general manager Mr Tonye Apiafi disclosed that over $2.7 Billion is being invested in the phase 4b of the Onne seaport complex.
Apiafi said “ The project will cover the dredging and reclamation of a total of 600 hectares of swamp land, construction of 2000m of jetty for berths 12 -19 as well as construction of over 350m jetty for port facilities which will incorporate fabrication and construction yards”.
According to him the construction of the Phase 4b of the Onne Port Complex also incorporates the construction of “an inner channel and turning basin for vessels, stacking areas, a 6000 cubic meters capacity water distribution system and construction of roads network in excess of 15,500 meters”.
Mr Apiafi further discloses that “a portion of the jetty can accommodate a 50 ton Super Heavy Load Platform (SHLP) whilst preparing for fabrication, construction and FPSO integration activities.
It is estimated that when completed, more than ten thousand people especially the youth would be gainfully employed and the project will have a direct impact in solving the unemployment situation in Nigeria as well as reducing the high incidence of militancy in the Niger Delta area of the country.
It would be recalled that the Onne Port phase 4b project was conceived as a private partnership project (PPP) between the Nigerian Federal Government and private investors toward upgrading port facilities in the Onne Port complex. It was also initiated so as to position Onne Port complex as a foremost integrated logistics hub with world class standard facilities.
According to Mr. Apiafi, “These developments are to take on serious industrial engagements in the oil and gas supply chain that will transform the Onne Port complex into Africa’s first full oil and gas industrial city and one of the strategic assets in the country. These investments will no doubt help the country to emerge as a leading oil and gas industrial nation.
Also speaking on the occasion, the Chief Executive Officer of INTELS, Mr. Andrew Dawes stated that “INTELS and NPA are partners in the public private sector. Our policy as a company is to invest in concession terminals in line with what is in the concession agreement by the NPA and Federal Ministry of Transport in line with the Federal Government strategy on infrastructure development.”
Mr. Dawes further revealed that vessels with over 50 tons of weight or load can conveniently be received by the new facility because the water depth is sufficient and it’s turning basin and lifting capacity is very adequate. He called for patronage from all oil and gas investors and stakeholders to avail themselves of the opportunities in the new Onne Port phase 4b complex so as to enhance their business and increase their profit.