Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, has called for cooperation and coordination between APM Terminals and China Civil Engineering Construction Company (CCECC), the Contractor handling the Ebute Metta - Apapa seaports railway extension in order to ensure completion of the project by January, 2021.
Speaking at the inspection of the project over the weekend, the minister said "we have already told the President, that we are commissioning in January. Now, I am working towards that time. We must achieve that time.
"I agree there are two contracts, first from Ebute Metta to Ibadan and the second one which we awarded later is Ebute Metta to Apapa to the Seaport to decongest the Apapa seaport and reduce gridlock and to do that, we have to get cargoes on the track and transported in that way, we will reduce the gridlock in Lagos. We are meeting to ensure that they increase their speed so that we can Commission in January," he said.
Speaking on the importance of the project, the minister said " the moment we begin movement of cargo from Lagos to Ibadan, then the Lagos gridlock will reduce drastically and that's my objective in January."
Speaking on the China Exim bank loan, he noted thus; "It is important for Nigerians to know that Ministry of Transportation does not take loans, the earlier we get that into our psych, the better for us.
"The only reason you people accuse ministry of Transportation of taking loans is because we implement the loan and we escort ministry of finance to sign the loan as witnesses.
"The only loan we have taken so far in Ministry of Transportation will be the $500 million loan in Kaduna-Abuja and the $1.4bn loan".
Earlier, the Country Manager of APM Terminal, Klaus Laursen, who showed the Minister the monitoring station which gives real time information on what is happening in all sections of the terminal, said, "the essence is to have it here to control and monitor cargoes coming in and going out of the terminal."
According to him, they decided to introduce one in Nigeria as it is the trend in Shanghai and other global towns where similar operations take place.