A consortium of Bolloré Africa Logistics and PowerChina International Group has secured the contract, with China Harbour Engineering Company retained as the reserved bidder.
Under the 50-year contract, the team will be responsible for the design, construction, financing, maintenance, operation and transfer of the project, consisting of eight terminals with a marine services centre in the south-east of Akwa Ibom State.
Approved by the Federal Executive Council in May 2015, the project, with an indicative value of $4.2bn, was launched in January this year through a request for qualifications which attracted eight responses, generating a shortlist of three.
The Federal Ministry of Transportation (FMOT), the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), the Nigerian Ports Authority, the Ministerial Project Development Steering Committee and Akwa Ibom State will now conduct due diligence on the preferred proponent before embarking on negotiations.
The FMOT will then submit a full business case to the ICRC, which will in turn issue a compliance certificate to be approved by the Federal Executive Council.
Authorities expect the project to be operational in 2021.