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Lekki deep seaport project gets fresh $629m loan

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Lagos State Government says it has secured a loan of $629m to finance the ongoing Lekki deep seaport project.
The state Commissioner for Commerce, Industry and Cooperatives, Dr Lola Akande, disclosed this on Monday, at the 2021 ministerial press briefing to commemorate the second year in office of Governor, Bababjide Sanwo-Olu.
The Lekki deep seaport is being built over 90 hectares of land at the centre of the Lekki Free Trade Zone, approximately 60 kilometre east of Lagos. It is the first deep seaport to be built in Nigeria on Built Own and Transfer agreement.

It received an infusion of over US $221m equity funding from China Harbour Engineering Company last year.

According to Akande, the latest loan secured from China Development Bank, is to support, falicitate the construction, development of the giant project and early operation in year 2022 targeted period.
“Current completion percentage as at February 2021 stood at 47 per cent, trial operations of the port is slated for third quarter of year 2022 while commercial operations is slated for first quarter of year 2023,” she stated.
Akande explained that the project had provided job opportunities for 611 locals: 32 local skilled workforce, 513 local semi-skilled and 66 local un-skillled labour.

Construction of the initially budgeted $1.5 billon seaport began in December 2017 and the project is expected to be completed in 2023 after a review.
The multi-purpose Lekki port will have container, liquid and dry bulk terminals to serve container vessels of up to 8,000TEUs (20ft equivalent units), dry bulk vessels, and liquid bulk cargo vessels.
A nine kliometre-long and 19-metre deep navigation channel and a 600m-wide turning basin will be built to allow vessels to approach or leave the port.
A 1,500m breakwater structure and a 300m secondary breakwater structure will be constructed for safe handling of vessels. Other facilities at the port will include a 6km-long and 14.5m-deep approach channel, quay wall, cargo handling cranes, and three 19m-deep liquid jetties.
When operational, the Lekki deep seaport is expected to be one of the most modern ports in West Africa and support the growth of commercial operations in the region as well as serve as alternative to Apapa Ports.

Akande also spoke on the state of the ongoing construction of Dangote refinery and Petrochemical Industry at the LFTZ, saying the project which had generated over 1,000 jobs, is expected to commence operation by end of the second quarter of 2021.
Akande said that the construction of an integrated petroleum delivery system valued at $230m had been completed.
She said, “Total number of 40 free zone enterprises were in operation as at February 2021,1054 local employment generated between October 2020 and February 2921.
“Though Lagos State Government has no shares in Dangote Group, we stand to benefit from employment opportunities.”

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Photos: Kia dazzles Nigerian fans, unveils Sonet, Seltos compact SUVs

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Lovers of compact sport utility vehicles built with sophistication in Nigeria have two new stunning products to celebrate, coming from Kia Motors. They are the all-new Sonet and the high-tech Seltos.

The two models assembled in Nigeria and unveiled in Lagos on Friday to the motoring journalists are expected to substantially raise the market share of Kia in the compact SUV segment, which is fast becoming the toast of many new car buyers globally including Nigeria, especially young trendy people.

Details later…

 

 

 

 

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Southern govs okay VAT collection by state governments

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Governors of the southern states have agreed that collection of value-added tax (VAT) should be undertaken by state governments.

Chairman of the Southern Governors Forum and Governor of Ondo State, Rotimi Akeredolu, disclosed this on Thursday while reading a communique at the end of a meeting of the governors in Enugu.

The Federal Inland Revenue Service and some state governments are currently in court over VAT collection.

Rivers and Lagos state governments have enacted laws empowering their respective states to collect the tax (VAT).

Last week, the Court of Appeal directed states to maintain status quo on VAT collection pending the determination of an appeal filed by the FIRS.

Akeredolu said that the governors affirmed that the collection of VAT fell within the powers of state governments.

“We resolved to support the position that the collection of VAT falls within the powers of the state,” he said.

He also said, “The meeting reaffirmed its earlier commitment to fiscal federalism and emphasised the need to pursue its inclusion in the Nigerian Constitution through the ongoing constitutional amendment.”

Akeredolu urged states in the south to leverage the competence of their houses of assembly and representation at the national assembly to pursue the goal.

He said that the meeting reviewed the state of the nation and the progress made in the implementation of the ban on open grazing of cattle in the south of Nigeria.

He said, “The meeting expressed satisfaction with the rate at which states in the south of Nigeria are amending or enacting the anti-open grazing law.

“This aligns with the uniform template and aspiration of governors in the south and we encourage the states that have yet to enact the law to do so expeditiously.

“The meeting agreed to encourage the full operationalisation of the already agreed regional security which will share intelligence and collaborate toward the safety and security of the region.”

The meeting was attended by Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu, Nyesom Wike of Rivers, Emmanuel Udom of Akwa Ibom, Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos and Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta.

Others are Adegboyega Oyetola (Osun), Douye Diri (Bayelsa) and Dapo Abiodun (Ogun).

The deputy governors in attendance were Bisi Egbeyemi (Ekiti), Rauf Olaniyan (Oyo), Kelechi Igwe (Ebonyi), Ude Oko-Chukwu (Abia), Philip Shuaibu (Edo), Prof. Ivara Esu (Cross River) and Placid Njoku (Imo).

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Land Rover to expand Defender with eight-seater 130, showstopper models  

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Land Rover is preparing to expand the Defender lineup, turning it into a family of vehicles similar to what it did with the Range Rover nameplate.

The expansion will specifically cover a long-wheelbase variant, an eight-seater 130, due next year to a posh, six-figure model in 2025, caranddriver.com reports.

According to a report from Autocar, the first variant to arrive will be the 130, an extended-wheelbase version with eight seats and it is due in 2022.

An opulent range-topper is also expected by 2025, and will ride on the MLA platform that will also underpin the next generation Range Rover.

Land Rover already sells multiple versions of the Defender—the stubby but charming two-door 90, the standard four-door 110, and the burly supercharged V8 model.

The 130 should be at least 10 inches longer than the 110, with most of that length added to the rear overhang.

The Defender 130 is expected to only come in higher trim levels and should feature both the six and eight-cylinder engine options.

The US and China will be the stretched Defender’s primary markets, says the report.

The fancier model coming in 2025 will be based on the MLA platform that will underpin the next Range Rover. The MLA platform will support combustion engines, plug-in-hybrid setups, and electric powertrains, and will also form the basis for the next Range Rover Sport, Velar, and Discovery.

This would make a Defender EV possible, but the Range Rover and Velar are expected to have priority for all-electric versions.

The high-end Defender’s interior will be the major distinction, and Autocar says it will feature more vibrant colours and upscale materials.

Although the powertrain landscape will have shifted even further towards EVs by 2025, the luxe-Defender will likely still be powered by the six-cylinder engine.

A plug-in hybrid is also currently sold in Europe, and an evolution of this setup could come to the US as well.

An entry-level Defender 80 had also been rumoured to debut by 2025. It would have been based on the EMA (Electric Modular Architecture) platform, but Autocar reports that this model has been cancelled. That platform will be found in the next Evoque and Discovery Sport, but Land Rover has apparently decided to not move the Defender name down market, as a baby Defender likely wouldn’t have the higher profit margins that should make the 130 and luxury Defender worth the investment.

 

 

 

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