Kunle Kalejaye 27 July 2016, Sweetcrude, Lagos – The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, says will no longer tolerate the disregard of the Cabotage and environmental laws by the International Oil Companies, IOCs, operating in Nigeria.
Dr. Dakuku Peterside, Director General of the agency, disclosed this when he held an engagement with representatives of the IOCs in Lagos on ways of fostering closer synergy towards Nigeria’s economic development.
Urging the IOCs to be mindful of all existing laws and regulations in the discharge of their duties, he said applicable sanctions would be meted out to erring companies.
The director general highlighted areas of concern to NIMASA to include the flouting of the Cabotage Law, negative impact to the environment from oil exploration activities, non-payment of statutory levies due to the government and inadequate information sharing.
He stressed that a situation whereby the IOCs engaged foreign vessels to do jobs that Nigerian operators had adequate capacity and equipment would no longer be tolerated as that had constituted an obstacle to the development of Nigeria’s shipping industry.
“You must give us ample notice of vessel requirements so that we can engage indigenous operators who have the capacity to do the job instead of giving it to foreign operators,” he said.
He added: “The spirit of the Cabotage Act is not to generate revenue in terms of waivers but to build the requisite capacity for indigenous players which will in the long run generate wealth and create employment for Nigeria’s teeming population”.
Peterside, who commended the IOCs for their compliance level with payment of statutory levies, however noted that the argument on the payment of Cabotage levies on Floating Production Storage and Offloading, FPSO, facilities and other offshore platforms was unnecessary.