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NEXIM sea-link project would cost $61.5 million – Roberts Orya

By on August 17, 2011

As part of efforts to deepen trade within the Economic Community of West African States (Ecowas) , the Nigerian Export Import Bank (NEXIM) has embarked on a sea-link project that would cost a total of $61.5 million.

The project is geared towards setting up a maritime shipping company that would link the West African coast in order to facilitate trade and ensure smooth transportation of goods among the Ecowas member states.

The fund required for this project would be raised through 60 per cent equity and 40 per cent debt.

The managing director of NEXIM, Roberts Orya, made this known yesterday in Abuja at the end of an interactive session with organisations that would spear-head the initiative.
The organisations to partner the bank on this project include, the Ecowas Commission, the Federation of West African Chamber of Commerce and the private sector which would drive the initiative.

He said the company which would be set up in Nigeria was initiated to limit the hurdles associated with the transportation of goods within the sub-region.
He noted that presently, the project was at the stage of incorporating a ‘Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) and afterwards, begin the process of raising equity which is where the private sector comes in to buy shares.

According to Orya, “We have identified that one of the barriers to deepening trade within the Ecowas sub-region is how to move goods within the region, if we have to increase the trade flow in the region we have to set up a vehicle to drive this. That was the brain behind our initiative, to have an efficient transportation system that would move goods from one member country to another, and also be able to create jobs for the teeming youths with whatever we have.

On the timeline for executing the project, he said, “We want to complete the incorporation of the SPV by the end of August, and by the end of November, the company would be incorporated.