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Chinese firm completes $1.5b Lekki deep port construction, hands over to operators

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• Sanwo-Olu vows to provide transportation infrastructure

The China Harbour Engineering LFTZ Enterprise (CHELE), a subsidiary of China Harbour Engineering Company Limited (CHEC), the Engineering, Procurement, and Construction (EPC) contractor for Lekki Deep Seaport, has announced the 100 per cent completion of work at the port.

The Lekki port is one of the biggest deep-sea ports in West Africa and it is expected to generate $361 billion revenue for the Nigerian government, while also providing close to 200,000 job opportunities for the nation’s teeming unemployed youths.

The Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria, Cui Jianchun, commended CHEC for displaying excellence in their project skills and promoting China’s commitment to Africa’s infrastructure development drive.

He noted that this project was a good example of what could be achieved when Nigeria and China cooperate and he looked forward to more of such projects.

The Vice President of CHEC, Mr. Wu Di, who also doubles as a Director of Lekki port, at the construction completion ceremony, disclosed that work started on June 15, 2020, and was completed on Monday, October 24, 2022, while revealing that the total contract value of the EPC for the project’s first phase is $581million

He said the completion work would now pave the way for the container terminal operator to take over the port in readiness for the start of operations.

In his remarks, the Chairman, Board of Directors, of Lekki Port, Mr. Biodun Dabiri, expressed the appreciation of the project promoters’ effort, CHEC and Tolaram, especially for the bold decision to invest in maritime infrastructure, which will help in Nigeria’s journey to economic prosperity.

Dabiri acknowledged the critical role played by the state governor in resolving the various challenges encountered in the construction of the port, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic and attendant lockdown.

Also speaking, the General Project Manager of CHELE, Mr. Xie Xianju, expressed delight that the construction was now completed. He noted that the port would be the destination of choice because it is the first deep sea port with a capacity to take large vessels.

He commended the team, partners and suppliers for their contribution to the successful completion of the construction.
Delivering the goodwill message on behalf of Tolaram (promoter and shareholder), the Managing Director of Lagos Free Zone, Mr. Dinesh Rathi, expressed delight at the timely completion of the construction of the port.

He noted that the port would further position LFZ as the next frontier for investment in Nigeria and increase foreign direct investment to Lagos State and Nigeria.

Meanwhile, the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has assured that his government is working hard to provide ample ambience for transportation infrastructure, saying that works are ongoing to develop a six lane road network in the Ibeju-Lekki port axis to avoid traffic congestion.

While expressing his government’s delight with the project completion, he reaffirmed the state government’s commitment to the timely delivery of the road infrastructure network around the Ibeju Lekki axis to ensure the seamless evacuation of cargo from the port.

He also called on both local and foreign investors to invest in the state, adding that the zone is specifically designed for encouraging investments into the State.