The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) has pledged it would support moves by African seaports to evolve digitally, saying that operational digitization was across the globe and African seaports cannot afford to play the ostrich.
The Authority has especially in the recent past been working steadily to digitalize operations at all port locations in the country, towards optimal efficiency, cost reduction, evolving user-friendly port systems, elimination of corrupt practices and service excellence.
The Acting Managing-Director of the NPA, Mohammed Bello-Koko, gave this assurance when he played host to a delegation of the Ports Management Association of West and Central Africa (PMAWCA), led by the association’s Secretary-General, Mr Jean Marie Koffi, in his office.
(From left) Mohammed Bello-Koko, Acting Managing Director, Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), and Jean Marie Koffi, Secretary General, Ports Management Association of West and Central Africa (PMAWCA), during the visit in Lagos, Nigeria.
The PMAWCA delegation came to officially invite the acting Managing Director as a Speaker at the forthcoming 41st PMAWCA Council Meeting, with the theme: “Digitized Port As A Model Of Port Efficiency”, scheduled for November 2021 in Douala – Cameroon.
Bello-Koko informed the PMAWCA delegation that the authority has over the years championed the transition from manual to digital, automated and smart business processes by working in collaboration with sister government agencies and providers of terminal and shipping services in the country.
He noted that the approach has enabled the country’s port system to continue to record increase in cargo throughout every year, a development that has made most of the seaports in the country operate far above their installed capacity.
The NPA helmsman commended the PMAWCA Secretary General and his team for sustaining the long cordial relationship between the two organizations, stating that “PMAWCA has been a worthy partner at boosting regional trade and most importantly encouraging the spirit of unity and brotherhood among ports within the sub-region and Africa in general”.
He also assured that the NPA is ready to work with PMAWCA to achieve closer regional integration and increased participation of ports in the region in the global economy.
“As a port authority, we have been implementing a port community system to improve collaboration and information sharing among all parties in the supply value chain.
“I, therefore, urge PMAWCA to remain steadfast in the promotion of the single window system as part of port operations in the sub-region, this is the right way to improve the efficiency of cargo clearance,” he added.
Responding, the PMAWCA Secretary-General, Jean Marie Koffi, eulogized the Authority and its succeeding CEOs for their impactful contributions over the years to the growth and development of the association.
While thanking the NPA Acting Managing Director for the very warm reception accorded his delegation despite his very busy schedule, he described the forthcoming 16th Roundtable Conference of Managing Directors as part of the highlights of the 41st PMAWCA Council Meeting, where delegates of member ports and sister organizations outside the continent would share experiences on digital transformation of their ports, the challenges encountered, the solutions applied and achievements therefrom.
He explained that the 2020 edition of the PMAWCA Annual Council Meeting could not hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic that ravaged the entire globe.
NPA pledges support for African seaports’ digital revolution