Despite the notorious traffic congestion challenges hindering ease of doing business in Tin-Can Island Port, the World Bank has ranked it and Onne Port ahead of peers in the sub-Saharan African region.
According to the newest Container Port Performance Index (CPPI) 2021 produced by the World Bank and S&P Global Market Intelligence, Nigeria’s Tin-Can and Onne Ports ranked 20 and 22 ahead of ports in Cotonou, Tema, and Lome.
Meanwhile, Lagos Port ranked 28 out of the 35 ports ranked within the sub-Saharan African region ahead of ports in Abidjan, Dar Es Salaam, Pointe-Noire, Ngqura, Durban, Cape Town, and Luanda.
Interestingly, Tin-Can Island Port is known for the protracted traffic gridlock, which has lasted for over a decade due to the poor state of the Apapa-Oshodi Expressway, the major access road to the port.
This largely affects the evacuation of goods out of the port and delays consignees from taking delivery of their cleared goods as and when due.
The protracted traffic congestion ends up causing importers a lot as several of them pay through their nose to cover for haulage and many others pay so much as demurrage and storage charges to shipping companies and terminal operators.
World Bank in its report said that ports that ranked high in the CPPI 2021 were those that recognised the importance of digital modernisation and invested in improving their processes using digital tools.
It further revealed that those ports offer digitised, real-time information through a virtual tool as well as an electronic data interchange, automated authorisations, and smart container delivery.
Pundits believed that the ranking is a call for Nigerian port to jettison manual vessel and cargo clearing processes into adopting automated procedures which is now the international best practices.
Also, the World Bank ranked ports by throughput, and the 370 ports in the world that were assessed in the report were categorised into three places including large ports that handled more than 4 million Twenty Equivalent Units (TEUs) of containers per year; medium for ports that handle between 0.5 and 4 million TEUs per year and small for ports that handle less than 0.5 million TEUs per year.
In this category, Tin-Can and Lagos Ports fall within the medium-sized ports while Onne Port was ranked as a small-sized port.