Shipping operators have been urged to deploy Flat Bottom Vessels (FBVs) for their shipping businesses in Warri and eastern ports to beat the challenge of low draught in the channels leading to the ports. The low draught has restricted shipping traffic in the ports at a time Lagos ports have been in near total lockdown due to the collapse of the access roads.

The managing director of the Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA) Hajia Hadiza Bala Usman, made the call as she promised that the dredging of the Warri port channel may be completed in two months.

Speaking in a ceremony in Lagos, the NPA boss noted that the completion of the dredging of the port channel will enhance shipping services in the Delta area and open it up for business.

She said that one of the critical areas NPA is working on is the dredging of Warri port to seven metres which will reduce the congestion in Lagos ports.

“We have also gotten the approval for the dredging of Warri port to seven meters and that is going to be completed within the next two month and this will go a long way in reducing the congestion we are having in Lagos port and also providing access for cargoes, particularly petroleum products coming into the country through the Delta port location.”

On the Calabar port, she noted that estimation for the dredging of the channel has been put at N50 billion but has yet to be finalised. She indicated that dredging the channel to Calabar Port will be executed with NPA’s internally generated revenue.