‘Tank farm owners looking for buyers’

Petroleum products depot.

Petroleum products depot.

03 September 2015, Lagos – Tank farm owners are presently looking for buyers for their facilities as the Federal Government moves to curb importation of petroleum products.

The focus for the Buhari administration is to improve on local production capacity which is already being achieved with two of the refineries producing, although below their installed capacity.

President of the International Freight Forwarders Association, Dr. Sam Onyemelukwe, who disclosed this in Lagos, said that owners of the facilities in Amuwo Odofin area of Lagos are presently looking for buyers of their tank farms.

Onyemelukwe who was responding to question on the best way to curb the traffic problem caused by tanker drivers queuing to load at the facilities around Coco-nut area, noted that federal government is focusing on local refining of petroleum products and it is only a matter of time before these facilities disappears.

Disappearing facilities
The IFFA boss further explained that some of the owners of these facilities are already looking ahead to the future and have put them up for sale.

He pointed out that the intervention of the Lagos state government has help to refuse the traffic situation along that route but noted that until “our refineries commence full product, the problem associated with the tank farms will continue.”

On the activities of terminal operators and shipping companies, Onyemelukwe said government should reassess the port concession regime because the scheme has not met the desired targets.

He pointed out that it is only in doing so that there would be reduction in capital flight, improve port efficiency and ensure maritime and shipping contributes maximally to national economy.

In his word, “The concessionaires allow delays and congestion in the terminals even as many dry docks (bonded terminal) are empty. These bottlenecks in the system appear to be deliberate aimed at making cargoes attract huge rent charges. This development has increased rather than reduce cargo dwell time, hence leading to higher clearing costs for goods from Nigeria’s ports,” he concluded.

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