Operational digitisation he says, is that the Vogue across the globe and that African seaports cannot afford to be left behind.
Koko stated that the authority has recently been working steadily to digitalise operations at all port locations in the country, towards optimal efficiency, cost reduction, evolving user-friendly port systems, elimination of corrupt practices and service excellence.
Acting Managing Director of the NPA, Mohammed Bello-Koko gave this assurance when he played host to a delegation of the Ports Management Association of West and Central Africa (PMAWCA), led by the association’s Secretary General, Mr. Jean Marie Koffi, in his office, Thursday in Lagos.
The PMAWCA delegation came to officially invite the acting Managing Director as a Speaker at the forthcoming 41st PMAWCA Council Meeting, with the theme: “Digitised Port As A Model Of Port Efficiency”, scheduled for November 2021, in Douala – Cameroon.
Bello-Koko informed the PMAWCA delegation that the authority has over the years championed the transition from manual to digital, automated and smart business processes by working in collaboration with sister government agencies and providers of terminal and shipping services in the country. He noted that this approach has enabled the country’s port system to continue to record increase in cargo throughput every year, a development that has made most of the seaports in the country operate far above their installed capacity.
The NPA MD commended the PMAWCA Secretary General and his team for sustaining the long cordial relationship between the two organisations, stating that “PMAWCA has been a worthy partner at boosting regional trade and most importantly encouraging the spirit of unity and brotherhood among Ports within the sub region and Africa in general”.
He also assured that the NPA is ready to work with PMAWCA to achieve closer regional integration and increased participation of ports in the region in the global economy.
Reiterating that “as a port authority, we have been implementing a port community system to improve collaboration and information sharing among all parties in the supply value chain.
I therefore urge PMAWCA to remain steadfast in the promotion of the single window system as part of port operations in the subregion, this is the right way to improve the efficiency of cargo clearance, he added”.
Responding, Jean Marie Koffi spoke glowingly about the authority and its succeeding CEOs for their impactful contributions over the years to the growth and development of the association.
He however, thanked the NPA acting Managing Director for the very warm reception accorded his delegation despite his very busy schedule, he described the forthcoming 16th Roundtable Conference of Managing Directors as part of the highlights of the 41st PMAWCA Council Meeting, where delegates of member ports and sister organisations outside the continent would share experiences on digital transformation of their ports, the challenges encountered, the solutions applied and achievements therefrom.
Koffi explained that the 2020 edition of the PMAWCA Annual Council Meeting couldn’t hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic that ravaged the entire globe.