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Arising from the menace of city logistics problems in Nigeria with reference, in particular, to the Apapa and Tin Can Island seaport axis of Lagos, the federal and state governments, in collaboration with private investors, seek to establish and/or develop some potential seaports to ease the burden of maritime logistics. The ways and manners concessionaires (terminal operators) of Nigerian seaports have over the years manage and develop port infrastructures in order to gain insights into shipping operational development in the country. Therefore, the objectives of this study are to examine the prospects and challenges of developing seaports after concession in Nigeria. The researcher adopt the survey research for the study. The population of the study comprises of 300 selected staff of Apapa seaport. The method of data collection was the percentage and graphical method. The hypotheses was tested with Chi-square statistics. The analysis was done with the aid of SPSS version 21. The study concludes that there is need to changed the port infrastructure and various concession terminals had boosted the cargothruputs as can be attested by the trend of throughputs released by NPA.




  • Background of the study

The global maritime trend is fast moving in the direction of deep seaports. Deep sea ports are also called “deep water ports”. In the global maritime industry, out of about 100 seaport developments being executed, approximately 75 per cent are deep seaports or terminals. The balance is believed to be mostly inland waterway ports and jetties. ( Nigeria as a country handles about70% of all seaborne trade in the West African sub-region due to her population and economy (Five Star Ltd, 2017). However, the inefficiencies in shipping logistics necessitated the concession of Nigeria’s maritime seaports terminals. In the past, vessels were delayed at berthing spaces, bureaucracies of cargo clearance made port not to be attractive, and most shipping activities were carried out manually. Therefore, it beacons on government in an attempt to finding lasting solutions to seaports’ problems decided to privatize and or concession the ports in 2006 (Okeudo,2013). Meanwhile, lack of sufficient storage capacity at Nigerian seaports’ terminals due to lack of adequate land as well as the increasing level of congestion associated with cargo movement within and outside the terminals motivates different approaches to deal with the situation. According to Omoke et al (2015) citing Bousquet and Fayard (2015) that, a concession arrangement is one which the government grants the right to fund, build, own, improve, upgrade and maintain or operate a public infrastructure and charge used for the cost of services rendered for a limited period stated for the operators. According to official website of Five Star Ltd (2017), a company that is part of concession programme narrated that; shady transactions, inadequacy of plants and equipment, pilferage, bribery and allied vices carried out by miscreants called wharf rats, by unscrupulous labour contractors who held ship masters and agents to ransom even after they have paid all official fees, and by a multiplicity of poorly coordinated federal law enforcement and security operatives were what led to the decision of government to concession Nigerian ports. According to OECD (2018) although concessioning the seaports made it to operate like a private firm; in many cases, they pursue a mix of private and public objectives and there is considerable public sector involvement in infrastructure supply. In Nigeria, Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) is saddled with the responsibility of management and development of port infrastructures. It acts now as the Landlord of all Nigerian owned seaports. De Langen (2008) argues that, port authority is strongly involved in infrastructure access and operations relating to maritime transport and hinterlands. The management and maintenance of quay, rail tracks/yards, warehouses and including the water front are critical to ensuring sustainable maritime transport development in Nigeria. Okorigba (2008) and Okeudo (2013) expressed that, Nigerian government initially commercialized Nigeria Ports Authority in 1992 to form Nigerian Ports Plc and rescinded that decision in 1996. However, post-concession reform as noted by Okorigba (2008) facilitated new equipment and development of port infrastructures in Nigeria. Post –concession has witnessed a very viable port which has contributed to the national economy and eliminated poor quality services and delays at the ports (Ehbenine, 2009). Based on the observation of Oni (2007), Nigerian ports do not have adequate computerized facilities that can enhance speedy port operation unlike what is obtainable in developed economy of the world. However, it is important to stress that, if and when this facilities and infrastructures are put in place and there is no proper maintenance, it is worst than not having the infrastructures in place because of money, energy and time that would have been wasted. According to NPA (2014) port concession provides better and more efficient management of shipping operations, application of socially and economically desirable projects thereby freeing government funding. De Lange (2008) illustrated how Rotterdam port authority manage infrastructure access to improve the port service efficiency and hinterland capacity by allocating slots for quayside access more efficiently. Victor et al (2016) reiterated that, lack of public finance of infrastructure has made Nigeria to lag behind in meeting demands of everchanging and developing needs of industries. Adelayo (2007) listed some major ports in Nigeria as: Apapa port, container terminal Apapa, Tincan Island, Lagos, RoRo Port, Warri Port, Port Harcout port, Onne Port and Calabar port. Although, concession contracts (OECD, 2008) can be used to stimulate innovations and many ports were awarded long-term concessions, they were issues on modalities for infrastructural maintenance and development. These issues not properly, accurately and adequately address can serve has impedance to the realization of fundamental objectives of port concession. Hence, this paper investigated the contributions, challenges and development since the emergence of port concession with a view to understand how the problems can be solved and enhance port infrastructural maintenance and development for maximum port operational efficiency.


The roles of the ports in the national economy cannot be over emphasized. As argued elsewhere, Ekong, (2014) and Badejo, (2018) noted that the ports, create job opportunities, provides alternative mode of transportation, generates revenue, accelerates the rate of urbanization, exerts huge multiplier effects on the economy and promotes international peaceful co-existence amongst nations. More importantly, the ports enhance to a greater deal the growth of trade and commerce (Olanrewaju and Falola, 2016; Badejo and Solaja, 2014). It is for the reasons outlined above those sustainable port operations must be achieved. To achieve sustainable ports operations and management, there is need to introduce policy reforms measures and regulations which when implemented and pursued help to achieve desired goals in the area of ports operations, terminal management and administration. It is in line with the above that this paper examines the impact of port reforms in Nigeria on port and terminal management. It is in view of the above that this study becomes imperative.


The study has one main objective which is sub-divided into general and specific objective, the general objective is to examine the prospects and challenges of developing seaports after concession. The specific objectives are:

  1. To examine the challenges seaport development after concession in Nigeria
  2. To ascertain if there is any significant relationship between seaport development and economic development of the study area
  • To examine the effect of seaport concessioning on the development of transport sector in Nigeria
  1. To proffer suggested solution to the identified problem.

The following research questions were formulated by the researcher to aid the completion of the study;

  1. Are there challenges seaport development after concession in Nigeria?
  2. Is there any significant relationship between seaport development and economic development of the study area?
  • Is there any effect of seaport concessioning on the development of transport sector in Nigeria?

The following research hypotheses were formulated by the researcher to aid the completion of the study;

H0: There is no significant relationship between seaport development and economic development of the study area

H1: There is a significant relationship between seaport development and economic development of the study area

H0: Seaport concessioning does not have any effect on the development of transport sector in Nigeria

H2: Seaport concessioning does have an effect on the development of transport sector in Nigeria


It is believed that at the completion of the study, the findings will be of great importance to the management of Nigerian port authority as the findings of the study will help them in formulating policies that will ensure effective management and development of Nigerian. The study will also be of great importance to the management of the federal ministry of transport as the study seek to explore the potentials of inland water transport system in the study area. The study will also be of importance to student of marine transport as the findings of the study will serve as a reference point to further studies in a similar topic, finally, the study will be of great importance to students, teachers, academia’s and the general public as the findings of the study will contribute to the pool of existing literature on the subject matter and will also contribute to the body of knowledge.


The scope of the study covers the prospect and challenges of developing seaport after concessioning in Nigeria. But in the course of the study, there are some factors that limit the scope of the study;

(a) Availability of research material: The research material available to the researcher is insufficient, thereby limiting the study.

(b) Time: The time frame allocated to the study does not enhance wider coverage as the researcher has to combine other academic activities and examinations with the study.

(c) Finance: The finance available for the research work does not allow for wider coverage as resources are very limited as the researcher has other academic bills to cover.



A port or harbor on or accessible to a seacoast and providing accommodation for seagoing vessels a town or city at such a place


A concession or concession agreement is a grant of rights, land or property by a government, local authority, corporation, individual or other legal entity

Seaport concession

A port concession is a contract in which a government transfers operating rights to private enterprise, which then engages in an activity contingent on government approval and subject to the terms of the contract.


This research work is organized in five chapters, for easy understanding, as follows Chapter one is concern with the introduction, which consist of the (overview, of the study), statement of problem, objectives of the study, research question, significance or the study, research methodology, definition of terms and historical background of the study. Chapter two highlight the theoretical framework on which the study its based, thus the review of related literature. Chapter three deals on the research design and methodology adopted in the study. Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding.  Chapter five gives summary, conclusion and also recommendations made of the study.