APM Terminals (APMT) Apapa has recently received the largest containership to ever call at the Lagos Port Complex.
The Singapore-flagged Kota Cantik, operated and managed by Pacific International Lines (PIL), is a 6,606 TEU boxship with a draught of 11.6 metres, length overall (LOA) of 300 metres and beam of 40 metres.
The historic berthing of the vessel was witnessed by officials of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), PIL and APMT Apapa.
Steen Knudsen, Terminal Manager, APMT Apapa, said: “We are excited at this historic achievement.
“We thank the Nigerian Ports Authority for maintaining the channels and for professionally piloting the vessel to the port.”
Knudsen added that one of the advantages of bigger vessels is economies of scale through lower slot costs for consignees.
“Carrying a higher number of containers per vessel translates into lower capital and operating costs per container, thereby reducing the transportation cost per unit,” he continued.
“Also, since bigger vessels consume less fuel per container transported, the emissions per TEU are lower than for smaller vessels. Thus, bigger vessels like the Kota Cantik are more environmentally friendly and contribute to lowering the total emissions of the shipping industry.”
Speaking during a reception for the vessel and its crew, the Managing Director of PIL Nigeria, Kevin Taylor, said consignees and the Nigerian economy will benefit from the vessel call.
“The customers in Nigeria have more opportunities to get cargoes in Lagos and also for competitive exports,” Taylor stated.
Charles Okaga, Port Manager of the Lagos Port Complex Apapa, expressed his excitement about the berthing of the vessel.
“The port is the major trade facilitation platform and when vessels of this type berth, it reduces cost of shipping and consumer goods because all of these costs are put to every shipment,” said Okaga.
“But if you pay less for shipment and logistics, the landing cost will also reduce and that reduces inflation while strengthening the ability of people to afford consumer goods.”
Daniel Osiakagum, Harbour Master for Lagos Pilotage District, said: “This milestone has put Nigerian Ports Authority on the map to say that 300 metres and over will be handled subsequently and we are ready for 350 to 400-metre vessels in Lagos Pilotage District.”
Also speaking, the Commercial Manager, APMT Apapa, Temilade Ogunniyi said, “The bigger the vessels you berth, the lower your cost and this leads to economies of scale.
“It also improves the pace of the operations at the terminal, leads to efficiency, reduces waste and delivers a faster turnaround time of vessels, which is a huge benefit to the economy.”