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Procurement Process For Ibom Deep Seaport Begins

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There are indications that the construction of the Ibom Deep Seaport (IDSP) will soon start following the advertisement of the Request for Qualification (RFQ) from reputable private sector port operators in partnership with the Akwa Ibom State Government and the Federal Government.
The RFQ is a major step critical towards the implementation of the IDSP project, apparently one of the most promising Public- Private Partnership (PPP) initiatives in Africa because of the several multiplier effects it will create in Nigeria and other African nations. The company disclosed on its website that: “The Akwa Ibom State Government, as part of its industrialisation plans, is very keen on implementing the Ibom Deep Seaport project as part of the Ibom Industrial City development through a PPP arrangement. The deep seaport, although a part of the industrial city, is treated as a separate project. The Ibom Deep Seaport will be owned by the Federal Government of Nigeria through the Nigeria Ports Authority in partnership with Akwa Ibom State Government and private investors. ‘’On the other hand, the Ibom Industrial City project will be solely owned by Akwa Ibom State Government. Both projects will utilise the state’s unique location to promote industrialisation in the region by developing a modern state-of-the art industrial city which will include a deep sea port. ‘’The Ibom Deep Seaport is in line with the Federal Ministry of Transportation’s (FMoT) plans to augment port capacity in Nigeria and a key component of Akwa Ibom’s economic empowerment plans. The project has the full support of the Akwa Ibom State Government, the Federal Government through the Federal Ministry of Transportation and the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA).” “The Ibom Deep Seaport will occupy 2,565Ha of land area of the 14,517Ha available for the industrial city project.
The approximate location of the project site scaled from the British Admiralty Chart No. 1387 is Latitude 04 32’ 35″ N: Longitude 080 14’ 07″ E. and UTM coordinates 415168 m E; 502,199 m N (UTM Zone 32N).
“The project site is strategically located and accessible through major existing and planned transport infrastructure such as airport, railway lines and federal and state road networks.’’ It indicated that the Ibom Deep Sea port project is one the Federal Ministry of Transportation’s initiative to augment port capacity in Nigeria and aligns with the aggressive industrialization project being carried out by the Akwa Ibom State Government. The company stated that the seaport will form part of an integrated industrial city to help foster economic development of the country, state as well as drive economic empowerment of the citizens. It stated that this will be achieved by developing industries adjacent to the deep seaport and within the Ibom industrial city, adding that the implication is that the development of the deep sea port will be carried out in such a way that the synergies of having it within the Ibom industrial city can be fully optimised. The company stated that identified industries that will be developed in the industrial city include agriculture, petrochemicals, marine related industries, auto assembly plants, power plants, as well as real estate developments etc. ‘’The design of the Ibom Deep Seaport has provided an additional 1,565Ha of land area for future expansion of the port taking cognizance of projected growth in cargo volumes.

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CAC Registers 245,000  SMEs Free Of Charge

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The Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) says it has registered more than 245,000 Small and Medium Enterp-rises  free of charge.
The Registrar-General, Alhaji Garba Abubakar,  said in Abuja on Wednesday that it did this with the approval of the Federal Government.
The Federal Government, he said, approved the free registration of 250,000 business names as part of its intervention to assuage the economic effect of Covid-19.
He said the Federal  Government paid 50 per cent of the cost of registration to CAC and more than 245,000 business names were consequently registered.
Abubakar explained that the process was electronic and applicants also got their certificates electronically.
He added that the numbers were divided between the 36 states of the federation and the FCT noting that Lagos, Abia and Kano States had the largest numbers.
He said free registration of 6, 606 business names was approved for 33 states while Abia, Lagos and Kano States would have 7, 906, 9,084 and 8,406 respectively.
Abubakar noted that aggregators were appointed and paid to collect SMEs information and submit same to CAC.
He explained that the commission provided special access for the aggregators for effective service delivery since they were responsible for scanning and uploading of documents.
He added that CAC had to take over from one of the aggregators appointed for two states but failed to deliver.
Abubakar said also that the intervention of CAC and appointment of substitute aggregators to take over in the two states sped up the process, already nearing completion.
“We are hoping that by end of September the exercise will come to an end,’’ he said.

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IPMAN Seeks Foreign Partnership For Robust Refinery Deal

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The Chairman, Rivers State Chapter of Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN),  Mr King Eppie, has said that he would be seeking the partnership of foreign bodies as part of his plans to strengthen the association.
Eppie said this when he spoke in a chat with newsmen in his office in Eleme, Eleme Local Government Area, Rivers State, Wednesday.
He pointed out that such plans would also encourage business growth especially to some of his members whom he said are  experiencing stormy business weather.
According to him, the challenging business condition was as a result of  non functional refineries in the country, stressing the need to seek for partnership.
He said that since its core business area was petroleum products, that his leadership would do all within its reach to improve the  system.
The Rivers IPMAN boss,  expressed hope that the ailing refineries in the country would bounce back to life.
“ I will be happy to see the refineries working again. Most of our members are suffering and business is no longer what it used to be, that’s why I want the refineries to come back to operation”, he said.
About the issue of legal battle in the association, he said that his team has been vindicated by the Apex court by declaring him the authentic chairman of IPMAN in Rivers State.
He recalled that the association was in a legal battle for about eight years, but expressed joy over its victorious end.
To those who were on the other side of the divide, he said that he has extended an olive branch to them as part of his plans to run an  all inclusive government.
“ The platform for those who went to court against us has been created for them to come back to the fold. IPMAN is one in the state and we are open to all, that is why we want everyone to come back”, he said.
The Tide learnt that the IPMAN chairman is  barely one week in office after years of legal battle that greeted the association as a result of leadership tussle.

By:King Onunwor

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1,818 MSMEs Benefit From Covid-19 Recovery Package In Delta

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No fewer than 1,818 Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) have benefited from Federal Government and the World Bank Covid-19 Action Recovery Economic Stimulus (NG-CARES) in Delta.
Governor Ifeanyi Okowa addressed the beneficiaries at the launch of funds disbursement in Asaba on Wednesday.
He commended the Federal Government and the World Bank for the partnership to provide succour for those affected by the pandemic in the country.
He said that now that the scheme had been domesticated in the state, the beneficiaries were in the first phase of the programme.
Okowa also lauded the Nigeria Governor’s Forum (NGF) for supporting the federal government to ensure that the programme was approved by the World Bank for implementation in Nigeria.
He also thanked the World Bank for the intervention and for working with state governments in the country towards cushioning the socio-economic effects of Covid-19 pandemic on the people, particularly the poor and vulnerable.
According to Okowa, today’s ceremony is a major step at putting MSMEs that are badly hurt by the pandemic on the path of recovery and growth.
He said this was “more so, with the disbursement of funds to the first set of 1,818 beneficiaries who have met the World Bank stipulated eligibility criteria within the initial six months.
“A total of 2,529 MSMEs are expected to receive grants to support post-covid-19 loans, operational costs and to enhance their IT capabilities.
“Indeed, we are glad to be part of the CARES programme of the Federal Government.
“The focus of intervention clearly aligns with the priority of the state government to give relief to those whose lives, businesses, jobs and means of livelihood have been distorted by the pandemic.
“The programme, which we have domesticated as the Delta CARES, is a two-year emergency recovery programme.
“It is aimed at supporting state governments’ budgeted programme of expenditures and interventions.
“It is to enable them to expand access to livelihood support, food security services, and grants for poor and vulnerable households and firms,” he said.
He said that the programme would also directly support 25,269 poor and vulnerable households with social transfers, basic services and livelihood grants.
The governor said it would as well support 13,976 farmers to boost food production and ensure smooth functioning of the food supply chain.
“The outlined figures are the targets stipulated by the World Bank, but do not preclude the State Government from scaling up if the need arises.
“It is my expectation that those charged with the implementation of Delta-CARES will be faithful in executing the mandate so that the desired results are achieved, bearing in mind that it is a Programme for Result (PforR),” Okowa said.
On his part, Dr Barry Pere-Gbe, Chairman, Steering Committee for Delta-CARES and State Commissioner for Economic Planning, commended Okowa for providing the funds for the programme.
Pere-Gbe was represented by the Commissioner for Youths Development, Mr Ifeanyi Egwunyenga.
He said that the main focus of the programme was to bring succour to residents whose means of livelihood had been disrupted by the impacts of Covid-19.
He said that the programme was hinged on three thematic area.

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