Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, has said the Federal and Lagos State governments could generate over $4.5 billion annually or $201 billion in 45 years from the Lekki Deep Seaport.
Mohammed said this on Wednesday during an inspection of the port alongside a team from the Ministry of Transport.
The minister said the port would help Nigeria’s quest to boost its economy through the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA), noting that the port would be a pacesetter and an economic game-changer.
He said: “I call it a game-changer because of the impact it will have on the nation’s economy and the jobs it will create.
“The investment is huge: $1.53 billion on fixed assets and $800 million on construction.”
Mohammed added that the port, when fully operational, will create 169,972 jobs and bring revenues totaling $201 billion to the Federal and Lagos State governments through taxes, royalties, and duties.
”The direct and induced business revenue impact is estimated at $158 billion in addition to a qualitative impact on the manufacturing, trade, and commercial services sector.
“The aggregate impact has been put at $361 billion in 45 years, which will be over 200 times the cost of building it,” the minister said.
Mohammed added that phase one of the project has reached an 89 per cent completion stage, assuring that it will hit the 100 per cent mark in September.
He said: “The facilities here are first-class. We have seven ships to shore cranes and 21 RTG cranes. No port in Nigeria currency has this.
“The excellent equipment is why this port can do 18,000 TEU (twenty-foot equivalent unit), which is more than four times the number that can currently be handled by our other ports.
“The project is self-sufficient in required electricity. It is now ready to generate up to 10 Mega Watts and the total capacity is 16 megawatts.”
The minister, who expressed joy at the quality of work done, stated: “When it begins operation in the last quarter of this year, it will make it possible for Nigeria to regain the maritime business that was lost to ports in Togo, Cote d’Ivoire and Ghana.
“It is also a big boost to Nigeria in its quest to take advantage of the implementation of the AfCFTA.
“A major advantage we have to leverage is transhipment. With this port, Nigeria will become a transhipment hub and the revenue we are currently losing to our neighbouring countries will come here. That’s big!”
On his part, the Managing Director of Lekki Deep Seaport, Mr. Du Ruogang, said the port would offer enormous support to commercial operations across Nigeria and West Africa.
The Lekki Deep Sea Port covers a land area of 90 hectares, which makes it the largest in West Africa.