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The Nigeria Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA) has granted a license to Nigeria's largest Free Trade Zone and Mega Port project, Maritime Africa Economic City
Granting of the licence to the area, colloquially known as Badagry Port and Free Zone, comes just one week after NEPZA's managing director Gbenga Kuye was criticised by Members of the Senate Committee on Trade and Investment of failing to perform adequate oversight of the authority during a visit to Calabar Free Trade Zone.
The committee stated that Kuye refused to make available details of the zone's Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) and the organisation's 2016 annual budget performance.
It was announced on 3 January that the licence for Badagry Port and Free Zone was handed over by Kuye to project director of the zone, Patrick Bird in Abuju. Bird said in the statement that “Today marks a tremendous milestone in the development of the Badagry project. With NEPZA, we intend to develop Maritime Africa Economic City into one of the most successful special economic zones in all of Africa".
Despite this, the Badagry Port and Free Zone is set to be Nigeria's largest Free Trade Zone and Mega Port project.
The port is located outside of Lagos along the Benin-Lagos expressway, which, itself, is being upgraded from a four-lane to a 10-lane expressway. In addition, the Badagry MegaPort will be linked to several locations by barge and rail.
Watch out for the February issue of African Review for an exclusive interview with Hadiza Bala Usman, MD of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) on continental port development.