The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), has said that despite the laudable initiative of the electronic call up system and the initial successes recorded on its introduction, there seems to be a reversion to the old ways as many importers and exporters are expressing severe frustrations.
The President, LCCI, Mrs. Toki Mabogunje who made this assertion during the quarterly media briefing of the Chamber held in Lagos recently, noted that extortions by law enforcement agencies had returned adding that there were transparency issues in the issuance of passes and the call up tickets.
Mabogunje further pointed out that the menace of empty containers belonging to the shipping companies had returned, the cumbersome processes at the port terminals were persisting, road rehabilitation works on the Mile2 – Tin Can Island axis were creating numerous bottlenecks insisting that all these were contributory factors to the congestion crisis on the port corridors.
While noting that introduction of the electronic call-up system via the Eto App at Apapa and Tincan ports was aimed at resolving the systemic gridlock crisis around the Apapa corridor caused by port congestion, she however maintained that the measure was a work-in-progress and may not alone provide a sustainable solution to numerous issues faced by economic agents at the ports.
According to her, “It is important for the Federal Government, Lagos State Government, Nigerian Ports Authority and other relevant stakeholders to address the internal issues within the ports including the terminal operators, custom processes and procedures, quality of cargo handling equipment, lack of credible framework for dispute resolution on import valuation and classification, presence of several government agencies with overlapping roles, serial extortions and racketeering and other structural bottlenecks stifling the ease of doing business at the ports.
“The intractable traffic congestion and the persistent long queues of trucks and tankers at the Lagos ports corridors remain a major worry to the Lagos Chamber considering its adverse impact on the nation’s economy. The situation has often led to delays in clearing of cargo including raw materials and machineries, delays in the movement and loading of export cargo, high demurrage, disruption in production activities, huge revenue losses, high cost of logistics, high insurance premium, deterioration of export cargo quality, high interest payments on funds used for import and export transactions and many more.
“The solution to this problem must be holistic and inclusive. It demands strong political will to bring discipline to the entire cargo clearing and export evacuation processes.
“Despite the laudable initiative of the Electronic Call Up system and the initial successes recorded on its introduction, there seems to be a reversion to the old ways. Many importers and exporters are expressing severe frustrations.”
Send your news, press releases/articles to firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, follow us on Twitter @ptreporters and on Facebook on facebook.com/primetimereporters or call the editor on 07030661526, 08053908817.