Festus Keyamo, the Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development, inaugurated the N1 billion Export Processing & Packaging Centre (EPPC) at Murtala Muhammed Airport (MMA), Lagos, on Friday. The facility aims to enhance cargo exports.
Keyamo assured NAHCO PLC of continued support in the cargo export business, emphasising revenue growth.
The Minister noted that with advanced equipment and expertise, challenges in exporting perishable goods will diminish, including shelf life, temperature control, packaging, handling, and regulatory compliance.
Represented by FAAN’s Olubunmi Kuku, Keyamo encouraged stakeholders to utilize the facility.
He said, “In a world where revenue growth is key,I want to assure NAHCO that we will continue to support them in this and other ventures. It is my hope that exporters and other stakeholders will take full advantage of this facility to boost Nigeria’s export numbers, which will impact positively on our balance of payment position and strengthen the Naira.”
She highlighted FAAN’s commitment to promoting cargo development, forming a committee to address facilitation challenges, particularly in exports.
The Minister for Aviation and Aerospace Development established the Cargo Services Directorate in FAAN to enhance freight services and foster innovation.
Kuku praised NAHCO Aviance’s leadership for their innovative approach and forward-thinking.
“I think it helps when an experienced business like yours sees the business sense in building a facility such as this to aid other businesses,” she said.
During the commissioning, Dr. Seinde Fadeni, NAHCO’s Chairman, expressed gratitude for the government’s support in easing business challenges.
He emphasised the importance of collaboration and thanked contributors for the project’s success. Fadeni urged the Federal Government to bolster NAHCO’s efforts in advancing Nigerian aviation.
In his words, “We have achieved this and the new task is to set a new goal. Our only request to the government on this occasion would be that; should we need your support in our quest to move aviation forward in Nigeria in our own little way, please be there for us.”
Fadeni emphasised NAHCO’s belief in Nigeria’s potential for food exports, stating, “We would need the government to give us all the support we need. The livelihood and indeed prosperity of many Nigerians depend on the export of perishables.”
He urged the federal government to convene stakeholders to propel the export segment forward and encouraged all involved parties to utilise the facility for export purposes.
Highlighting the significance of the new facility, he emphasised its stakeholder-centric design.
Indranil Gupta, NAHCO’s Group Managing Director, underscored the strategic significance of the facility, aiming to enhance Nigerian product competitiveness globally and create domestic employment.
The GMD emphasised that through streamlined export processes, adherence to strict packaging standards, and ensuring product quality, NAHCO enhances Nigeria’s product reputation globally.
Gupta stressed the significance of this endeavour, stating, “This is very important.” He further highlighted the Export Processing and Packaging Centre’s role in fostering skills development and empowering Nigerian youths.
Gupta underscored that the center embodies NAHCO’s commitment not only to business but also to socio-economic empowerment.
“As we commission this centre, we are embarking on a journey that not only strengthens our foothold in the global market but also contributes to the economic development of Nigeria. This facility is a symbol of our unwavering commitment to quality, efficiency, global standards, and customer satisfaction,” he said.
He mentioned that the EPPC provides office spaces for regulatory bodies and government agencies.
NAHCO PLC is committed to nurturing collaborative ties with cargo agents, valued clients of the facility.
He expressed gratitude to the government, regulatory bodies, and stakeholders for their unwavering support, which has been instrumental in realising this vision. NAHCO anticipates ongoing collaboration for mutual benefit.