TECHNICAL REPORT 18 WATER TRANSPORT
I THE PORTS
The first ports of Nigeria were Akassa and Forcados (transit ports
for Niger traffic), Calabar and Victoria. Port activities began at Lagos following the opening of the sand bar at the entrance to the
harbor in 1913, and the port started operations simultaneously with
the completion of the railway line to the North. About that time,
Port Harcourt was constructed as a port terminal for the eastern
branch of the railway. At the present time nine ports are open to
ocean-going vessels. They fall into three categories:
|1. ||National ports, serving the whole country ( Lagos and Port
|2. ||Regional ports, serving a limited hinterland (Sapele, Degema
(Abonema), Calabar, Victoria (Bota) and Tiko).|
|3. ||Ocean-Niger transit ports (Warri and Burutu).|
All ports except Calabar and Bota are entered through channels
and over sand bars which limit the draught and make frequent and
extensive maintenance necessary. The ports are shown on Map 13.
The volume of foreign and coastwise traffic at the different ports is
shown by Tables 1 and 2.
Since 1938 export traffic has increased by approximately 70%,
while import traffic has trebled, as shown by Table 3, which also shows
the increased importance of the national ports.