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Three Managing Companies Shortlisted For Kribi Seaport

They are discussing the modalities for handling the container terminal with stakeholders even as the port is technically fit for use.

The government of Cameroon is into discussion with three international container management companies in view of selecting one that will efficiently manage the container terminal of the Kribi Deep Seaport when it finally goes operational. A communiqué from the Prime Minister’s Office indicates that Bollore/CMA/CHEC group; APM Terminals BV and ICTSI INC have been shortlisted from a pack of companies that on August 14, 2014 submitted proposals for the management and development of the container terminal of the port.

If Bollore is almost a household name in the country, it is not the same for the other two. Information indicates that APM Terminals with headquarters in the Netherlands operates a Global Terminal Network on five continents including 63 operating port and terminal facilities in 39 countries, and over 150 Inland Services operations in 45 countries.

It is said to provide port management and operations to over 60 liner shipping customers of containerized and other cargoes. Meanwhile, ICTSI INC headquartered in the Philippines is in the business of acquiring, developing, managing and operating container ports and terminals worldwide.

The three companies will be holding discussions with stakeholders of the port to showcase what they intend to do. A source at the Operational Unit of the port told Cameroon Tribune that the discussion will seek to align the proposals of the companies with the aspirations of government. At term, one of the three companies will be selected to manage the port.

The port, our source noted, is technically fit as construction works on the edifice are complete and heavy-duty vessels can now conveniently anchor at the general port site in Mboro, some 35 km from Kribi town. This is thanks to the acquisition of the port’s vital equipment, two tug boats, meant to facilitate the anchoring of bigger vessels. The customs administration was also recently on the site to map out strategies through which they will play their central role for the fruition of the infrastructure to the State.  

What Remains To Be Done?

Finishing works are ongoing on the access road from Kribi town to the port site to ease traffic of goods and persons when it goes operational. The road, added to an envisaged double-carriage road from Kribi to Lolabe and from Kribi to Edea will greatly facilitate smooth circulation of containers known in port cities. While waiting, attention is now focused on the highest authority of the land to appoint the management team of the port.

Experts say once the team will be in place and the entire port personnel recruited, there will be need to market the infrastructure to the business community for commercial ships to choose the destination. It’s only when commercial ships find in Kribi port a safe haven that economic activity there can boom to engender socio-economic development that come with seaports.

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