Contrary to misconceptions being perpetrated, the Nigerian Ports Authority has come out to clarify things, saying that it does not charge the highest tariffs along the West African coast.
In a press statement signed by the NPA image maker, Engr Adams Jatto, and made available to PLATFORM REPORTERS, the authority stated that in May 2019, Messers Crown Agents, who were commissioned by the Authority with the support of UK Aid produced the result of an assessment which revealed that it is cheaper to berth general and container vessels in Nigerian ports than it is in Ghana and Togo.
Accroding to NPA, “Specifically: while it costs $94,567.63 VAT inclusive to berth a general cargo vessel with GRT of 26,770, LOA at 196m and cargo of 14,100 MT in Nigerian ports for instance, ports in Ghana and Togo charge $217,879.07 and $120, 357.58 exclusive of VAT for the same types of cargo respectively.
“Similarly, while the Authority charges $108, 806.90 VAT inclusive on a container vessel with 39,906 GRT, LOA of 261m carrying 172×20” and 139×40” containers, ports in Ghana and Togo charge $117,906.58 and $128,406.94 exclusive of VAT respectively.
“The Authority would also want to reiterate that apart from towage dues, which were reviewed to cover the cost of providing the service in 2015, our tariffs have remained the same since 1993. This is also in spite of the erroneous inclusion of Stevedoring charges, which is collected by Terminal Operators as the Authority’s component.
“Costs like freight rates and terminal handling charges are components outside the purview of the Nigerian Ports Authority, which has no powers to regulate economic activities at the ports.
“The NPA assures its customers and all port users of its commitment to the ease of doing business policy of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration and is working to enhance the competitiveness of all Nigerian ports”.