Managing Director, Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA, Habib Abdullahi has said that a total of 20.626 million metric tons of refined petroleum products passed through the various ports into the country between January and December 2015. The figure showed a slight increase of 0.6 per cent over the amount of products imported into the country in 2014, which figure stood at 20.495 million metric tons.
Abdullahi released the details of Nigeria Ports Authority operations in 2015 to select newsmen in his office.
He said that crude oil lifted in 2015 through the ports was 117.646 million metric tons which was 9.1 per cent more than the 107.880 million metric tons volume that passed through the ports in 2014.
The ports, it was learnt generated N11.9 billion in Naira revenue in 2015 and was able to collect N6.9 billion. The data indicates that the naira revenue generated by NPA dropped by 1.7 per cent from the N12.1 billion in 2014.
In the case of the amount it was able to collect from port operators, it dropped by 17.2 per cent from a figure of N8.4 billion in 2014. According to the NPA boss, the dollar revenue the ports across the country generated in 2015 stood at $873.7 million.
There was however a decline in dollar revenue of 2.2 per cent from its 2014 figure of $893.7 million in 2014. But the dollar revenue collected stood at $629.7 million, a decline of 13.3 per cent gap between the amount generated and the amount the NPA was able to collect at the end of 2015.
He said that the dollar revenue generated from oil terminals and compulsory Pilotage amounted to $35.5 million an increase of 12.3 per cent over the $36.1 million in 2014.
However, unlike the naira generated revenue, the dollar revenue collected from terminal oil due and pilotage increased by 12.3 from $33.9 million in 2014 to $38.1 million in 2015. According to the NPA boss, the organisation’s local debt stood at N18.9 billion while foreign debt stood at $452.9 million as at the end of the 2015 financial year.
The NPA boss also said that the number of ocean going vessels that called at the port was 5,090 which showed a decrease of 8.1 per cent when compared to the 5,541 in 2014.
He said the gross tonnage carried by the ocean going vessels was 144,207,122. This is a decline of 2.5 per cent when compared to the 147, 852,920 in 2014. Further the number of coastal vessels completed was 10,200, a decline of 29.9 per cent when compared to the 14,552 the previous year.
The gross tonnage of these coastal vessels was 6,323,684 a drop of 18.9 per cent from 7,801,567 a year before. The number of crude oil tankers completed was 976, showed an increase of 8.7 per cent over the 898 in 2014. The gross tonnage of the crude oil tankers was 98,695,774 a growth of 12.1 per cent over the 88,009,864 metric tons in 2014. A breakdown of cargo movement through the ports showed that Liquefied Natural Gross stood at 22,340,277 metric tons showing an increase of 3.0 per cent over the 21679,330 metric tons in 2014.
Giving an over view of the challenges facing the maritime sector in Nigeria, Abdullahi said “Maritime sector is dependent on import and export of goods, so definitely, there is less business now in the ports, this means there is less revenue for us, and that in itself is a very big challenge. You are very aware that there is some challenge in foreign exchange market, which is related to the revenue of the whole nation, and we are highly dependent on oil revenue and the price of oil has come down; we are very much relied on the world economy, but maritime industries are dependent on world trade, in that way it has imparted on our activities, so what ever has imparted on our activities definitely would negatively impact on our revenue.
“The year 2016 has just started, in fact I would say the year has not even started going by the fact that the budget has not been officially approved. And so, it has impacted negatively on maritime operations. For instance, if you look at goods and services, we are less by about 10 per cent. Let’s say the number of ocean going vessels that were completed are five thousand, nine hundred, (a decrease of 8.1 percent) was recorded in 2014. “Customs, if you go there a lot of empty containers are there and the place is messy. We are trying to see how we can make that place Ikorodu an export terminal for example. We have some interested parties that are coming in and are trying to help some dedicated port. We have the Ilaja port in Ondo state, the former Olokola port, and the Ondo state government is trying to make that port dedicated to solid minerals, quite a number of people are coming to show interest.
“Interestingly, quite a number of people do not understand our operation and are our role now in the maritime sector. I cannot tell you that when you bring goods in you must use that other port. It is dependent on the importer and exporter. We are just land lords, all we do is to give the necessary operational rules and infrastructure,” he said.