FG recommends floating national shipping carrier
From Idu Jude, Abuja
The Federal Government has recommended the establishment of a national carrier through a Public Private Partnership arrangement for freight transport in the country.
The Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Adegboyega Oyetola stated this recently during a facility tour of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency’s (NIMASA) headquarters.
Speaking on his determination to change the narrative in the maritime sector by putting in measures that will make Nigeria a major player, Oyetola expressed determination to reposition the sector in line with President Bola Tinibu’s renewed hope agenda.
According to him, it is daunting that Nigeria is the only member of the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries ( OPEC) with no national line that bears its country’s flag.
This, he observed, was unacceptable noting that establishment of a national carrier will put paid to the 30% freight charge used to charter vessels.
The Minister was however quick to draw out that his call for a national line should not be misrepresented as a call for the re-establishment of the moribund Nigerian National Shipping Line (NNSL).
Speaking further, the Minister spoke on his interest in NIMASA’s modular floating dock due to the fact that it has the capacity to generate jobs and stem capital flight. He however, called on the Agency to explore the buy-in of stakeholders.
On the potentials of the blue eto the nation, the Minister stated that the economy of Barbados is purely dependent on tourism and Nigeria with one of the largest wetland in the world would be ideal for harnessing of coastal tourism.
The Minister assured that fishing and other elements with potential to grow the economy will be explored.
Speaking earlier, the Director General of NIMASA, Bashir Jamoh thanked President Tinubu for creating a stand-alone Ministry for the maritime sector, stating that this has always been clamoured for by stakeholders and Nigerians.
Jamoh said that with the creation of the Marine and Blue Economy ministry, Nigeria now joins seven other countries in the world that have stand-alone Blue Economy Ministry. He assured that with this development, NIMASA is better positioned to maintain and put Nigeria on the global sphere.