• Monday, June 24, 2024
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APM Terminals rallies stakeholders to boost Nigeria’s non-oil export

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APM Terminals Apapa, Nigeria’s largest container terminal, has rallied stakeholders to work together to eliminate bottlenecks hindering export trade.

The terminal operator hosted a maiden edition of its ‘Exporters Forum,’ with a promise to support the Federal Government’s drive to diversify the economy through the promotion of non-oil exports.

Read also: APM Terminals Apapa invests 9,696 man-hours in learning, development

Speaking at the event, Frederik Klinke, country chief executive officer of APM Terminals Nigeria, lauded exporters for the role they play in economic growth and advancement.

He said the Exporters Forum was created to exchange ideas and eliminate obstacles facing the export business in Nigeria.

According to him, non-oil export remains an important aspect of the Nigerian economy, and APM Terminals is committed to ensuring that exporters using the terminal can transact their business with little or no obstacles.

He assured the exporters of quick loading and offloading, fast positioning for Customs examination and prompt delivery.

“Nigeria is endowed with many resources to place it among the top emerging economies of the world and APM Terminals will continue to support the country’s export drive to diversify the economy, earn more foreign exchange, and create jobs and prosperity for the people,” Klinke said.

Also speaking, Ismaila Badjie, commercial manager of APM Terminals Apapa, said the terminal will continue to explore ways of facilitating non-oil exports at its facilities across Nigeria.

Caroline Aubert-Adewuyi, chief commercial officer of APM Terminals Nigeria, said the terminal was already working with the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) on using the new standard gauge rail line to facilitate the transportation of containers from Moniya, Oyo State to the port.

She also expressed APM Terminals’ commitment to the use of barges to move boxes in and out of the port to facilitate both imports and exports and reduce pressure on the road.

Aubert-Adewuyi assured the exporters of regular interaction. She said the Exporters Forum will be expanded and held bi-annually.

While identifying various challenges facing export cargo along the logistics chain, many of the exporters that attended the forum commended APM Terminals for the initiative and for supporting the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) and the Federal Government’s drive to diversify the economy.

Olubunmi Olumekun, president of the Association of West African Exporters and Marine Professionals, lauded APM Terminals Apapa for providing the platform to discuss the logistics challenges facing exporters.

He said Nigeria has a huge export market which can only be developed through collaboration.

The exporters were taken on a tour of the terminal after the event.

APM Terminals Apapa has invested more than $438 million equaling about N657 billion —in the upgrade and development of the terminal since it commenced operation in 2006.

The investment was made in infrastructure, container handling equipment, modernisation of the terminals’ IT hardware and software systems, manpower training and the development of additional capacity, resulting in significant productivity improvements, with zero waiting time for vessels and a doubling of container volumes.