The Edo State Government has concluded plans with the Port of Antwerp from Belgium as part of measures to finalize the Benin River Ports project.
This was gathered from a meeting of the Benin River Port (BRP) Project Committee with the State Governor, Godwin Obaseki and the representatives of the Port of Antwerp.
While the Chairman of the BRP Project Committee, Mr. Greg Ogbeifun led his team, the Manager of Ports Project, Port of Antwerp International, Mr. Phillippee Droesbeke, led the contingents of the Port of Antwerp to the meeting with the governor, which is set to drive the Benin River Ports project to conclusion.
The Benin River Port is among the legacy projects by the Governor Godwin Obaseki-led administration to drive industrial and economic growth in Edo.
A statement sent to City Business News explained that the the port, upon completion, will boost export earnings, create employment opportunities, expand the economic value chain and open up new business opportunities in the state.
Speaking on the partnership, Governor Obaseki said the arrangement will see the Benin Port become both a cargo handling port and an industrial complex to facilitate industrial production in Edo.
According to him, “We are glad to be partnering with the Port of Antwerp from Belgium to finalize the Benin River Port Project, a key project in our pursuit to drive industrialization and economic growth in Edo State.”
The governor further noted, “This arrangement will see the Benin Port become both a cargo handling port and an industrial complex which will handle industrial production across various value chains.
“The project will take advantage of the vast gas reserves in the area which will support industrial production and operation of the port and industrial complex.”
Mr. Greg Ogbeifun said the state government has continued to record sustained progress in its drive to develop the Benin River Port, reassuring that the new partnership with the Port of Antwerp will see to the finalization of the project.
“According to him, “The Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA) is actively working with the Edo State Government and the Port of Antwerp on the project and will be the regulators of the port on completion.
Hailing the governor for creating a conducive environment to attract investors into the state, Ogbeifun noted that the port is well-positioned to benefit the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).
He added, “The African Continental Free Trade Area has further given a boost to the project.”
On his part, Droesbeke, said the Port of Antwerp is delighted to be partnering with the Edo State Government on the Benin River Ports project considering its huge economic benefits to Edo, Nigeria, and Belgium.