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How Competitive and Efficient are Nigerian Ports?

In: Economic Policy Options for a Prosperous Nigeria


  • Okechukwu George Oji
  • Chukwuma Agu


It was not really a spectacular sight: a refitted World War II tanker, Ideal-X, moving from New Jersey to Houston carrying 58 aluminium truck bodies. When it stopped, the trucks were unloaded, dropped onto trailer chassis, and hauled to their final destinations. The date was April 1956. It was not a spectacular event either, but it marked the beginning of a global revolution in sea transport, the beginning of containerization. It was not only to change global trade in significant ways; it was also to change the destiny of people and cities. Marc Levinson (2006) chronicles the impact of this small revolution in shipping on world trade. He noted that: the introduction of container shipping in the late 1950s and early 1960s … represents a major technological advance with significant economic consequences. By dramatically lowering the cost of freight handling, the container reduced the need for factories to be near suppliers and markets and opened the way for manufacturing to move out of urban centers, first domestically and then abroad. This impact was particularly intense in New York City, where the container revolution began. Containerization had a devastating impact on New York City’s economy and was a major contributor to the collapse of its industrial base between 1967 and 1975.

Suggested Citation

  • Okechukwu George Oji & Chukwuma Agu, 2008. "How Competitive and Efficient are Nigerian Ports?," Palgrave Macmillan Books, in: Paul Collier & Chukwuma C. Soludo & Catherine Pattillo (ed.), Economic Policy Options for a Prosperous Nigeria, chapter 12, pages 275-299, Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Handle: RePEc:pal:palchp:978-0-230-58319-1_13
    DOI: 10.1057/9780230583191_13

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