By Roland Ekama
The SIFAX Group-led consortium, Ocean and Cargo Terminal Services Limited, has been declared the preferred bidder of Terminal B, Warri Old Port.
At a meeting held on Wednesday at the office of Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) Abuja, the SIFAX Group-led consortium beat other bidders to emerge the preferred bidder of the port.
The event, according to a statement signed by Muyiwa Akande, Corporate Affairs Manager, had in attendance the representatives of the National Council for Privatisation (NCP), the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), among others.
The Expression of Interest for the port was advertised in 2014. At the deadline of the submission of the EOIs, 13 applications were received. Out of the 13 applications, seven were pre-qualified. Of the pre-qualified bidders, five were able to submit their technical and financial proposals on January 31, 2017, the deadline for submission of the proposals.
The five companies are Marine Infrastructure Consortium, Bright Ocean Integrated Services Limited, Ecomarine Consortium, Ocean and Cargo Terminal Services Limited and Neon Warri Ports Consortium. At the end of the evaluation of the technical proposal, Ecomarine Consortium and Ocean and Cargo Terminal Services Limited’s financial bids were qualified for the financial bid opening stage.
After the open and transparent competitive bid process which is in line with international best practices, Ocean and Cargo Terminal Services Limited was declared the concessionaire of Terminal B, Old Warri Port. The concession is for a period of 25 years.
Speaking immediatelyshortly after the announcement, Dr. Taiwo Afolabi, Group Executive Vice Chairman, SIFAX Group, expressed his appreciation to both the BPE and NCP for the transparent exercise, adding that the concession will enjoy the same Midas touch he said has now become the hallmark of SIFAX Group’s businesses.
He said: “This is a great news for us as a company to have led this consortium to win this very competitive bid. While we are glad that we have emerged the preferred bidder, we are not unaware of the enormous responsibility this victory has conferred on us. However, it is a familiar territory for us, having operated the Terminal C at the Tin Can Island Port, Lagos successfully in the last 12 years. We will fall back on the experience and expertise we have developed running the terminal to make a difference at the Warri Port.”
On his own part, Mr. John Jenkins, Group Managing Director, SIFAX Group, said the company will set new standards with the management of the new terminal.
“BPE, NPA and other relevant government agencies should look forward to an efficient port management system when we formally take over control of the terminal while the clients are in for an unparalleled customer-focused service delivery that will put them at the heart of our operations.”