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APMT may win bid for Lilypond Terminal over its plans for agro hub

Just as the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), this week gave a strong indication of plans to open a bidding process for the concession of apparently moribund Tin Can II container terminal, also known as Lilypond Terminal, former concessionaire, AP Moller Terminals (APMT), has given signal that it may join in the emerging bidding.
It would be recalled that the company won the bid in 2006 for a 10 year management which expired in 2016.
However, in an interview, the Head of Communications, APMT, Mr Austin Fischer, confirmed the group’s readiness to bid again for the terminal on the ground that it did not intend to use the facility as a dry port terminal but as an agricultural hub for its new Cold Chain project aimed at preserving perishable goods coming from the north.
Analysts had since the stepping up of agro revolution by the current government, there had been issues in storing products ahead of shipping and the challenge has grossed spoilages of perishable agro products.
Experts say if APMT wins the bid and goes ahead with its plan, the development will further deepen investments in agro exports as wastages from spoils will be drastically reduced by virtue of infrastructure APMT will put in the repositioning of the facility.
Fischer had observed that the terminal was originally designated as an overflow facility for containers coming to APMT in Apapa Port, adding that when the firm later increased the capacity of the Apapa Port from 200,000 Twenty Equivalent Units to one million TEUs, the firm saw no need to use Lilypond Terminal as an overflow facility because the Apapa Port was big enough for all its containers.
The terminal, located opposite the busy Ijora Bridge, was used in the past to house containers conveyed by rail from the seaport, stakeholders told our correspondent, saying that the mode of transportation was cheaper and faster and helped ease the traffic gridlock along the port access roads.