To deliver cutting-edge services and consolidate the gains of its investments in infrastructure upgrade, including the recent reconnection of the Apapa terminal to the rail line, APM Terminals has appointed Klaus Holm Laursen as the new country manager for Nigeria.
Laursen, who will now oversee operations at its Apapa, Onne and Kano terminals, was until this appointment the managing director of APM Terminals, Poti Seaport – the largest port in Georgia, which handles liquids, dry bulk, passenger ferries and 85 per cent of Georgia’s container traffic.
He has worked with the Maersk Group since 1998 in various capacities and has served in various countries, including Denmark, Malaysia, South Korea, Netherlands, Jordan and Egypt.
Excited at the tasks ahead, Laursen said on assumption of office in Nigeria: “I am happy to work in Nigeria. I believe Nigeria has a lot of potentials and our company is happy to contribute to the economic development of the country and the well-being of the people.
“We will work with the Nigerian Ports Authority, Nigerian Shippers’ Council, Nigeria Customs Service and other relevant agencies of government at all levels to actualise the Ease of Doing Business policy of the Federal Government and make the ports more efficient.”
He assured of “reliable, safe and efficient operations with a continuous improvement focus. We also assure our customers of flexible and solutions-oriented approach to address their needs, in addition to deploying innovative, digital solutions that enable customers to order their services quickly and easily.”
APM Terminals Apapa recently acquired seven additional Mobile Harbour Cranes (MHCs) as part of a fresh investment of $80 million for the year 2020-2021.
This brings the company’s total investment at the port since 2006 to $438 million – the highest by any private terminal operator in Nigeria, and resulting in significant improvements in productivity.
For a more efficient cargo delivery services, which will reduce the pressure on the roads, it has also restored regular rail evacuation of cargo, and only last week introduced two daily rail connections from Apapa to Alagomeji Terminal in Yaba and Ijoko Terminal in Ogun State.
With these, trucks can now be deployed to both locations to collect containers and return empties to the port through the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC).
Further to reducing truck traffic on the road, it also receives and loads containers on barges, alongside a truck safety programme, which ensures that designated, physically protected areas are provided for drivers on operational activities outside their truck cabs, as well as safety instructions specific to each facility’s layout and traffic flow.