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FG: Ports to operate 24 hours service

The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Otunba Niyi Adebayo, has said plans are underway for the ports in Nigeria to operate 24 hours a…

The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Otunba Niyi Adebayo, has said plans are underway for the ports in Nigeria to operate 24 hours a day and seven days a week to facilitate quicker movement of goods.

He said this Thursday during the weekly ministerial briefing on the Sugar Backward Integration Program (BIP) organised by the Presidential Communication Team at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.

He said the challenges hindering quick evacuation of goods from the ports at minimal cost and effort for both imported and exported products were being addressed with infrastructure like road network and the award of contracts for scanning machines to enable more efficient and quicker clearance.

On the development of ports, he said apart from Apapa and Tin Can, there are plans for a new port to come up in Badagry after the new port in Lekki, which will be operational before the end of the year.

Adebayo said the government was looking at improving the road network at Port Harcourt and Onne Port so that it can ease the congestion of Lagos.

On the sugar master plan implementation, he expressed optimism that the cultivation of 10,000 hectares for the sugar backward integration programme should be over within 18 months.

On whether the excise duty on soft drinks based on sugar consumption would not have a negative impact on manufacturers of sugar in the country, he said: “In the long term, it might have an effect on sugar producers. But in the short term, it will not.”

“At present, our sugar intake in Nigeria, we import 1.7 billion tons of raw sugar every year. At the present moment, we are only manufacturing less than 5% of that. So, it gives us an opportunity to build up what we are manufacturing,” Adebayo explained.

He said the ministry hopes that Nigeria will be self-sufficient in sugar production in 10 years and be able to export sugar

 

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