In Nigeria’s Lagos State, the Badagry Ship Repair Marine Engineering Consortium (BSMEC) has emerged as the lead investor for the $1.5 billion (ZAR18.3 billion) dockyard project being facilitated by Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas Limited (NLNG), The Guardian reported on Friday.
The consortium includes SIFAX Logistics and Marine Services Limited, SIVC Infrastructure, Sahara Group Limited, Japaul Oil and Maritime Services Plc., Energy Nature Limited and GMT Energy Resources Limited.
Korean ship builders, Samsung Heavy Industries and Hyundai Heavy Industries will provide technical support while the Africa Finance Corporation will provide financial consultancy and support.
LNG sector benefits
A statement issued by the Corporate Affairs Manager of SIFAX Group, Muyiwa Akande, explained that the consortium is expected to take the initiative in financing and driving progress related to the successful actualization of the project.
Akande revealed that, during a recent courtesy visit to NLNG in Abuja by a delegation representing the group, the consortium’s Chairman, Dr Taiwo Afolabi, reaffirmed BSMEC’s commitment to the ship dockyard project, maintaining that the consortium was fully aligned with NLNG’s aspiration for Nigeria to have a major shipyard that can deliver quality services, while increasing Nigerian content development in the oil and gas sector.
The proposed dockyard is part of the Nigerian content drive of NLNG’s shipping subsidiary, Bonny Gas Transport’s acquisition of four LNG vessels from Samsung Heavy Industries (SHI) and two LNG vessels from Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI).
The initiative includes the training of more than 600 Nigerians in various aspects of shipbuilding both in South Korea and in Nigeria, as well as export business opportunities worth tens of millions of dollars, for several Nigerian companies including Berger Paints and Nexans Kablemetal in the ship building trade, according to a company statement.
The Badagry dockyard is expected to cater for the maintenance of all sizes of ships such as oil carriers, gas carriers and rigs in Nigeria, to international standard, and “will revolutionise the maritime industry in Nigeria and the African continent”.
Responding to the BSMEC delegation, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of NLNG, Babs Omotowa was quoted as saying the completion of the dockyard and commencement of dry-dock services by 2020 will be a key strategic achievement for Nigeria, reported The Guardian.
He stated that: “This project holds many benefits, one being that LNG vessels, very large crude oil carriers and other ships will be maintained and repaired in this dockyard, which will result in millions of dollars being generated for the Nigerian economy and the avoidance of such foreign spends in other locations.
“We have already started reaping low hanging fruits from this project, with over 600 Nigerians being trained in ship building and design at SHI and HHI shipyards in South Korea and several Nigerian products being exported internationally for the first time. The technical partnership with SHI and HHI is one of a kind and it has paid off with the transfer of knowledge to Nigerians who will run this industry in the future”, he concluded.