By Oluyinka Onigbinde
The Managing Director, Tolaram Group, Haresh Aswani, has said Lekki deep seaport project will create 170,000 jobs and expected to generate about N360billion under the concession plan including over N200million in tax revenue for both the Lagos State Government and federal government.
Speaking during the inauguration ceremony of the deep sea port last week, he said, “I believe the project would change the future of the nation’s maritime sector and serve as a catalyst for economic development and the general well-being of Nigerians if well harnesed
Speaking also at the event Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo said the Federal Government will embark on massive exportation of goods using the Lekki deep Seaport.
He informed that the development of the Lekki Deep Seaport was critical to the creation of special economic zones, which would serve as models for others across the country.
According to him, “In the past two budgets, we have provided an average growth of N90billion for development of SEZs and we are developing the special Lekki economic zone as a model for other economic zones specifically targeting export.”
He noted that the land mark event was in tandem with the Federal Government’s Economic Recovery Growth Plan and the present administration’s emphasis on supporting game changing infrastructure projects directed at making major impact on trade and commerce
“And a reflection of the government’s commitment to economic philosophy to private sector leadership to achieve economic development,” he said.
He stressed that the business of government is to contribute by way of equity where necessary, but more importantly, create the enabling environment for the private sector to do business.
“We were told by the promoters of this project that they are targeting about 1.5 million 20 feet equivalent unit container capacity annually, which we expect to grow to about 2.7 million and 4.7 million TEUs when the project operations commence. With this feat, the Lekki Deep Seaport will be one of the largest deep water seaports in our region and serve as a hub for port operations in the whole of West Africa.’
“We have been told that very large crude carriers will now be able to visit the port and greater efficiency and economies of scale will generate significant economic revenue for the Nigerian economy with the Federal Government earning a significant portion.”
“We must move ahead with ensuring the speedy completion of this project; there will be problems, but we assure you that the federal and state governments will be with you every step of the way to ensure that we give all the support required to make this dream come to fruition,” he stated.