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Kaduna Dry Port Seeks More Locomotives, Wagons

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The Kaduna Inland Dry Port Limited inaugurated by President Muhammadu Buhari last year is far from realising its full potential, no thanks  to lack of functional rail and deplorable state of roads in the country.

The port manager,  Mr. Rotimi Raimi, said that  the challenges had forced the cost of transporting cargoes from the Lagos seaport to the dry port to go up, a development that had  hampered its operations.

Specifically, Raimi said the high freight cost could only be tackled if the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) can make the rail workable and provide enough locomotives and wagons for easy transportation of cargoes from the seaports in to the dry port.

He noted that the Kaduna Dry Port had all it takes to make the state  and indeed the entire  north economically viable, saying “what makes Lagos economically viable is the Murtala Mohammed International Airport and the seaports.”

He explained that with the Dry Port and the international airport in Kaduna, the state ought to be a beehive of economic activities but for the high freight cost which has hampered the port operations.

The KIDP boss then appealed to the federal government to hasten up the provision of locomotives and freight wagons as promised for business to thrive at the port.

He said, “The reason why the shipping companies are a little bit negative in their actions toward the port  is that  they look at the high cost of freight.

“Assuming you pay Inland and ocean freights, Inland will pay for its own N150,000, but before the container will land here(Kaduna), it will be between N600,000 and N700,000. Who will pay the difference? This is our area of challenge.

“The only way this can be curbed is through the Nigerian Railway Corporations. They  should help us with more locomotives and wagons to carry cargoes from seaports.

“The rail can move about 20 to 30 containers at a go. All the NRC needs to do is to make schedule movement of cargoes and it makes everything easier. If you go to South Africa and other developed countries, that’s how it is done.”

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