Shippers’ Council calls for national carrier, indigenous participation in maritime

NIMASA targets sustained piracy decline to end war risk charge, reduce shipping cost

  • NIMASA Director-General, Dr. Bashir Jamoh (right), and NSC Executive Secretary, Emmanuel Jime, during the council’s courtesy visit to NIMASA

By Anthony Nwachukwu

No better time for a national carrier than now that the world gradually looks away from fossil fuel, the current mainstay of the Nigerian economy, the Executive Secretary/Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC), Emmanuel Jime, stated.

This comes as the current Federal Government, under different excuses, had severally failed to show commitment to aiding the indigenous ship owners with the Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (CVFF), which was established under the Coastal and Inland Shipping (Cabotage) Act, 2003.

Jime, who led an NSC delegation on a courtesy visit to the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) in Lagos, commended the agency for placing fleet expansion at the heart of its efforts to encourage indigenous participation in the maritime industry.

According to him, “Nigeria cannot be caught unawares. We need to look at ways of developing our shipping sector which, from studies, is capable of earning the country even more than oil annually. And maritime security is pivotal to achieving this goal.”

He further called for greater collaboration among relevant government agencies to enable the country derive the full economic benefits of the maritime sector.

Meanwhile, NIMASA Director-General, Dr. Bashir Jamoh, has stressed that a sustained reduction of piracy and other maritime crimes in Nigerian waters would end the War Risk Insurance premium on Nigeria-bound cargoes.

Jamoh told his guests that the international shipping community, as could be seen from the recent reports by the International Maritime Bureau (IMB), has acknowledged Nigeria’s progress in the quest for security in the Gulf of Guinea.

According to him, the sharp decrease in maritime incidents logged in IMB’s second quarter report was a valuable feedback on the agency’s campaign for Nigeria’s delisting from countries under the war risk insurance burden, and an indication that the shipping community looked forward to sustenance of the progress made.

“Feedback on our campaign for Nigeria to be removed from countries paying war risk insurance premium on inbound cargoes has confirmed that the international shipping community is watching developments in Nigeria and the Gulf of Guinea with keen interest,” he told the visitors, according to a statement from the Assistant Director, Public Relations, Osagie Edward.

“Their desire is to see a sustainability of the positive developments in recent times, leading to a drastic decline in piracy attacks in Nigerian waters and the Gulf of Guinea.

“Since the deployment of the Deep Blue Project assets in February, there has been a steady decline in piracy attacks in Nigerian waters on a monthly basis.

“With adequate sensitisation of the international shipping community, I am sure that our quest to be removed from nations considered to have dangerous waters will soon materialise for the benefit of Nigerian shippers.”

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