Relief has finally come the way of Lagos residents as Visionscape Sanitation Solutions, the concessionaire of waste management company under the Lagos Cleaner Initiative (CLI), has received $50million consignment of a brand new 100 vehicle for waste management fleet in the metropolis.
The vehicles, embedded with cutting-edge technology, consists of a series of waste trucks, from various rear end loaders to operational vehicles.
Conducting journalists on the tour of the modernized Transfer Loading Station (TLS) on Lagos Island on Wednesday , Chief Operating Officer (COO), Visionscape Sanitation Solutions, Mr. Thomas Forgacs, said the company has set for operations of waste collection and management across the state, starting from Agege this week.
Besides, he said: “We want to deploy in two months 20,000 galvanized bins, and we are starting with 3,000 bins this week.”
Forgacs hinted that the company has commenced renovation of other transfer loading stations across Lagos State in Agege and Oshodi, in order to provide integrated waste management solutions for the treatment of municipal solid waste and wastewater under CLI
Transfer Loading Stations are processing facilities usually located within city limits, where waste collection vehicles temporarily deposit collected waste from their servicing areas to be transported in bulk to the landfills after processing.
Visionscape is expected to manage the processing and transfer to the landfills across the state. The Tapa TLS is the first to be completed. The facilities are expected to receive approximately 6,700 tons of waste a day. Each TLS include features such as weighbridges, disposal depot points and maintenance bays, housing hundreds of vehicles.
With these innovations, Forgacs said the company has commenced the next phase of it contract for CLI.
The CLI was established to address, enforce and regulate the challenges in the solid waste management systems within Lagos State. The initiative is focused on improving the environment to make it cleaner, safer and healthier for all Lagos State residents, as well as developing operational efficiency.
Visionscape is currently in a public-private partnership with the Lagos State Government, set to provide management services for the CLI, under the Lagos State Waste Management Authority (LAWMA).
Forgacs said the arrival of the trucks were addition to the waste management fleet which is in line with the company’s commitment to provide integrated waste management services, using state-of-the-art equipment and innovative solutions to help transform megacities.
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Environment, Lagos State, Mr. Abiodun Bamgboye, said the state government in conjunction with Vissionscape would deploy 500 trucks as a target for Lagos.
He said: “We are displaying what we have received now and more are still coming. The policy has been formulated, facilities are now coming in and personalities are being engaged.
“Lagos state is trying to actualized the degree of ensuring that people live a healthier and secured live, create means of livelihood and opportunity of engagement for people.”
On waste bill, the permanent secretary said that Public Utility Levy would take off immediately Visioncsape commences its full activities by parking waste from the road.
Speaking on the modality of fee, he hinted that tenement occupying 0-700 square metres(sqm) of space will pay fairly low fee, while those from 700 to 1000 sqm would pay more, adding that people occupying 1000 to 1500 sqm would pay highest.
Forgacs said: “As a pioneer in environmental solutions, the Visionscape trucks are fully equipped and embedded with cutting-edge features, which includes a Global Positioning System (GPS), radio-frequency identification (RFID), and automotive Controller Area Network (CAN bus) system.
“These innovative features are designed to meet the operational needs facing waste management across the state. Using these methods, Visionscape will be able to monitor and track the state’s waste collection process thoroughly, ensuring the trucks are deployed for effective waste collection within Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs) and Local Government Areas (LGAs). In the last six months, he said the organization has surveyed all of Lagos State and collated vital data to aid operations, “adding, “we, therefore, understand population density of the communities and areas that will be serviced, even up to the number of streets and households across the state.”
Tincan Customs chief to implement 48-hour cargo clearance
Customs Area Controller (CAC), Tin Can Island Port Command, Musa Baba Abdullahi has reiterated the command’s unshaken commitment to achieve 48hour cargo clearance from the port without compromising revenue collection and national security.
The customs chief said efforts are being put in place to maximise benefits of technology and build the command’s manpower to meet with the growing challenges of modern trade.
While addressing maritime journalists in his Apapa office, Musa identified swift dispute resolution as a key component to facilitate trade. He said the command has put in place a faster mechanism to address any area of disagreement in interpretations of guidelines for duty collection and other related matters.
He added that a committee put in place for disputes resolution meets as soon as any dispute arises to avoid port users incurring costs caused as a result of delays in resolving such disputes.
According to him, there is a quicker process of bringing issues to his attention and contacting the headquarters where necessary to avoid delays associated with such disagreements. He said the command has stepped up efforts at keeping officers and relevant stakeholders abreast with the use of technology for the purpose of customs operations.
The Controller disclosed that senior officers and licensed customs agents are being trained at the command’s Information Communication Technology (ICT) Centre on the latest Nigeria Customs Information System (NICIS 2) in batches.
Musa said the training and retraining of customs personnel and stakeholders will continue with a view to getting as many persons as possible knowledgeable in the workings of the system.
He also stressed the need for all stakeholders to increase their levels of compliance with rules and improve on their knowledge as ways of achieving seamless flow of trade thereby achieving faster clearance of goods from the port.
The Controller also advised the maritime media to uphold the ethics of their profession and be fair and truthful in all they do.
Early rainfall to boost Nigeria’s cocoa mid-crop
Nigeria’s mid-crop cocoa output for 2017/18 could rise by 15 per cent from last season, helped by a mix of rainfall and sunshine in the main growing regions which has helped the trees, President of Cocoa Association of Nigeria (CAN) Sayina Riman said in a recent interview with Bloomberg.
Drought cut last season’s mid-crop harvest by 40 per cent. The dry weather continued into the main crop of the new season.
Riman said the drought affected the trees, reducing output of between 300,000 tonnes and 320,000 tonnes projected at the beginning of the 2017/18 season.
He said that early rains in March and April have helped boost the mid-crop, which could see the season’s output close at around 290,000.
Riman farms on a 170 hectare cocoa plantation in Nigeria’s second-biggest region of Cross Rivers.
The cocoa season in Nigeria runs from October to September, with an October-to-February main crop and a smaller light or mid-crop that begins in April or May and runs through September.
“Despite the drought of last year which affected cocoa we believe we would be close to 290,000 tonnes for 2017/18 season,” Riman told Reuters.
The International Cocoa Organisation (ICCO), however, gives much lower estimates of Nigerian cocoa output. It forecast last season’s production at 225,000 tonnes.
Riman did not give a reason for the discrepancy. Nigerian government production figures are also significantly higher than ICCO estimates.
Nigeria has recently emerged from recession and a currency crisis which caused a chronic dollar shortage, forcing exporters to under-invoice their goods in order to use the foreign exchange black market to get premium for their hard currency.
The action caused the West African country slip to the sixth producer of cocoa in the world at the peak of the crisis. Riman said Nigeria was getting back to number four grower as exporters now use the official currency markets.
Riman said Nigeria was working on improving its bean quality especially with renewed demand from Europe.
However, bean count, a measure of the number of beans needed to produce 100 grams of cocoa, reached as high as 140 for the main crop.
Rising Nigerian bonds drags yields down
Nigeria’s local-currency bonds are on a roll, rising for the last eight days and driving their yields below Turkey’s for the first time in more than two years.
The average rate on Nigerian government bonds has fallen around 400 basis since an August-peak to 13 per cent. Yields are now 100 basis points below the Central Bank of Nigeria’s benchmark interest rate of 14 per cent, where its been held since July 2016.
Investors have piled into the naira market thanks to slowing inflation, a stable currency and rising Brent crude prices, which climbed about 25 per cent in the past six months to more than $70 a barrel. In contrast, they’ve turned bearish on Turkey, which has the worst-performing local bonds in emerging markets this year, because of accelerating inflation and loose monetary policy.
Central Bank Governor, Godwin Emefiele, may be tempted to commence his long-touted easing cycle and help revive the economy that has faltered since the 2014 oil crash. While that would reduce the attractiveness of naira assets, Nigerian yields are still high relative to other major emerging markets. Aside from Turkey, Argentina and Egypt’s bonds are the only ones to yield more in the Bloomberg Barclays EM Local Currency Index.
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