How improving the logistics chain will assist Nigerian and West African economy

There is great excitement in the freight transport, logistics and supply chain management sectors about the Nigerian government’s plans to increase port and terminal activity. Thousands of representatives from the transport and logistics industry, ranging from road, rail, sea, air to inland waterways, will meet for the Multimodal West Africa exhibition and conference in Lagos from 24-26 January 2017.

“In July 2016, the Minister of Aviation made a pronouncement that our ports are overwhelmed and as a result of that, they are creating dry ports for the different geopolitical zones” says Oluremi Ajayi, General Manager of DSV, the fourth largest freight forwarder in the world.

She adds: “this will go a long way to strengthen our connecting modes of transports especially the rail system and also boost relationship within and outside African countries through the Ecowas Trade Liberalization Scheme.”

“Nigerian economy is ready to take a big leap”
Mr Samuel Jeffson, Director at St. John Freight Systems agrees: “we as St. John Group are equally excited as we closely monitor some interesting developments ahead with investments coming in from global conglomerates like AP Moller in the upcoming Badagry port facility and also the setting up of Lekki Deep Sea port by AfDB and a consortium of private investors and banks. With these additional facilities coming up, it will increase the port and terminal throughput activities by multiple folds.”

He continues: “presently we see that the Nigerian economy is ready to take a big leap but its port infrastructure unfortunately does not support the vision and forms a major bottleneck. We believe with the new facilities coming up, the port and terminal industry landscape will totally change.”

DSV and St John are both already confirmed to exhibit at the upcoming Multimodal West Africa transport and logistics exhibition and conference, which will offer a unique platform to showcase the latest supply chain solutions and equipment to decision makers from leading cargo owners, importers and exporters. The event represents all transport modes across every logistics sector including manufacturing, retail, agribusiness, chemical, automotive, food, beverages, pharmaceuticals, recycling and many more.

Industry support
Already the event has the support of several key industry bodies, including the Chartered Institute of Logistics & Transport (CILT) Nigeria. Says former CILT President and head of The Africa Forum, Maj Gen Umar Usman (Rtd): “Multimodal West Africa has the ability to deliver more business than any other transport and logistics exhibition in West Africa. Having so many VIP customer decision makers from all sectors under one roof will mean that more business can be done in the three days that in months of arranging meetings. As a supporting association, CILT Nigeria members will most definitely be participating maximally”.

Some of the 2500 cargo owners, shippers, major importers and exporters already registered to attend include West African Cotton Company, Zaika Foods Ltd, Pharmatex, GSK, De United Foods Industries Limited, Frigo Glass and DN Meyer. More than 80 exhibitors are expected, including freight forwarders, ship owners, shipping lines, ports & terminal operators as well as official government bodies.

Expectations by logistics sector
“Port development and trade expansion are closely interrelated; therefore I am excited about the Nigerian Government’s plans to increase port and terminal activity” says Jennifer Ijeoma Anoyika, Director General of the Nigerian-German Business Association, another leading supporting association of Multimodal West Africa.

She explains: “there are numerous expectations by the logistics sector, the business community and the general public, to see a great deal of obvious and measurable economic impacts and benefits resulting from the proposed port and terminal activity expansion. With appropriate investments and implementations in the right aspects, the plan should yield positive direct and indirect effects. We hope to see economic, technical, infrastructural and organisational development.”

Multimodal West Africa is organised by the specialist, exhibition and conference organiser, Clarion Events West Africa, the Nigeria office of the Clarion Events Global Group. The same organisers responsible for the widely acclaimed Nigeria Manufacturing & Equipment Expo which took place March in Lagos, attracting more than 2,600 attendees, with the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) as event patrons.

With nine years’ experience in the transport and logistics industry, Clarion Events West Africa and the Clarion Events Multimodal portfolio successfully connect cargo owners, shippers, major importers and exporters with freight forwarders, ship owners, shipping lines, ports & terminal operators as well as official government bodies to bring about greater port activity, increase connectivity and display the latest solutions for a slicker supply chain. The portfolio consists of Multimodal, held in London, UK; The Supply Chain & Logistics Summit & Expo, held in Europe; and Multimodal West Africa, held in Lagos, Nigeria.

Multimodal West Africa dates and venue:
Exhibition and conference: 24-26 January 2017
Venue: Landmark Centre, Lagos, Nigeria


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