• Monday, July 22, 2024
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Bonny Chamber of Commerce worried over shutdown of $12bn NLNG Train 7 project

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The $12bn NLNG Train 7 project site has been shut down by Daewoo Engineering Nigeria Limited due to many weeks of industrial action. This has caused worry to the Bonny Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (BOCCIMA).

The Island Chamber has in a statement signed by the Director-General, Constance Nwokejiobi, said the developments, allegedly stemming principally from prolonged labour union issues between the workers and the Management of the EPC contractors of the project, SCD JV (a Joint Venture made up of Saipem, Chiyoda and Daewoo), should have been resolved on a more conciliatory and amicable note.

The statement, quoting the President of BOCCIMA, Amairigha Edward Hart, noted that Train 7 is a huge project, which it said at the moment provides a major source of economic transformation in Bonny Island, and hope, especially, in the Gas sector of the Nigerian economy.

The statement went on to say that the Train 7 project has employed many Nigerians in thousands as well as engaged several businesses directly and indirectly aside from expectations on proposed corporate social responsibilities and business opportunities for BOCCIMA members.

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“Disruptions and scale down of operations at the project site does not necessarily help the controversial issue on union negotiations which we believe should be managed internally without affecting other stakeholders that depend on the project for sustenance. Rather, a continual operation of the project site with more strategic engagement would more likely facilitate a faster resolution of the dispute.”

As a Chamber, the statement went on, they would thus suggest the activities at the project site be managed with best practices. BOCCIMA called on all parties in the dispute to seek a more amicable option in resolving the issues at this period the country’s economy is undergoing a lot of challenges thereby affecting so many families and businesses.

Nwokejiobi said the Chamber has pledged to support with advocacy and enlightenment of the economic gains of the Train 7 project amongst its members and other relevant stakeholders with a view to achieving the right business environment and advantages while improving the economy of Bonny Kingdom.

The workers have rejected the order to vacate the workers village until some conditions were made, thus raising more fears of crisis.

Daewoo said Sunday evening it shut down the place because it could no longer guarantee safety of the over 2000 workers and property. Daewoo had earlier said they would not negotiate with the National Association of Plant Operators (NAPO) and that reopening was not any time soon. They asked the workers to vacate the workers village with immediate effect.

President-General of NAPO, Harold Benstowe, told the workers not to take orders from Daewoo management.