11 October 2011, Sweetcrude, Lagos – Nigerians own only 60 of the 600 vessels involved in upstream petroleum sector business in Nigeria, general secretary of the Indigenous Shipowners Association of Nigeria (ISAN), Captain Niyi Labinjo, has said.
Labinjo said in Lagos that out of the 60 vessels owned by Nigerians, only about six are currently in business, lamenting that the rest are anchored at the nation’s waters without jobs.
Labinjo disclosed each vessel participating in offshore operations earn at least $5,000 per day, which, according to him, is the least amount collected by foreign vessels doing business in the Nigerian waters.
He said the country was losing about N2 trillion annually in capital flight as aresult of this.
He noted that since Nigeria was in the top 10 of world oil producers and having 37 billion barrels of
oil reserves, Nigerians should enjoy the benefit of the product.
But he lamented that this has not been the case as the situation in the in the shipping business had shown.
He further lamented: “Nigeria has close to 500 oil wells that we are drilling all over the place. For each well, there is a rig which is supported by a minimum of five ships, and they are called oil support vessels.
“As at today, for ships that earn $5,000 and above per day, there are about 600 of them, there are those that even earn $150,000 per day, you now have 60 belonging to Nigerians out of this 600. Those 60, if you go to our waters, you will see them there they have no jobs. So for offshore we are not just there.”