01 October 2017, Sweetcrude, Lagos — THE Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, has admitted its failure for the non-provision of sea time training for the nation’s hundreds of graduate cadets of the Nigerian Seafarers Development Programme, NSDP, an initiative of the agency.
This was contained in a communiqué issued at the end of a one day stakeholders meeting organized by the agency in Lagos, just as operators and players in the maritime industry have agreed to work towards achieving the objective of a Blue Economy.
The conference titled the harmonized Stakeholders Interactive Session was convened to provide a platform for obtaining stakeholder feedback on relevant operational areas and nurturing the required engagement.
Besides, at the end of interactive session, the following resolutions were proposed:
Stakeholders also agreed that mandates be given to NIMASA to create an enabling environment for the private sector to invest in shipping in order to achieve the objective of a Nigerian blue economy
NIMASA was also directed to continue to make the necessary representations to the approving authorities in order to facilitate the disbursement and utilization of the Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (CVFF) for its statutory purpose of developing indigenous shipping capacity
At the end of interactive session, other resolution agreed upon includes the fact:
- That NIMASA should explore creative avenues for achieving this given the current constraints of inadequate funding and the lack of an indigenous national fleet;
- That NIMASA is committed to pursuing its Maritime Administration(MARAD) mandates via the path of collaboration and engagement with stakeholders and in the spirit of this interactive forum, all critical issues shall be duly presented to the stakeholders for their input and consultation;
- That the battle against piracy and other criminal activities on Nigerian waters is receiving the highest attention from the Nigerian Navy, NIMASA and other Agencies working in collaboration and will receive a substantial boost when the recently approved Surveillance Contract delivers state of the art equipment and facilities for the use of the industry;
- That NIMASA will engage relevant Agencies and stakeholders in order to create a regime of concessions and policy initiatives designed to boost the competitive edge of Nigerian ship-owners vis a viz their foreign counterparts;
- That NIMASA will soon launch a programme of Zero tolerance to non-compliance with maritime safety and security standards in order to eliminate substandard shipping in Nigeria;
- That the processes of the Nigerian Ship Registration Office are being automated and shall be available online, real for shipowners and prospective owners without undue delay;
- That NIMASA is committed to the maintenance of a clean and pristine Nigerian marine environment in line with applicable international Conventions and has put in place the appropriate administrative regime to achieve this;
- That in line with the Blue Economy initiative, NIMASA shall going forwards subject all policies to the test of sustainability and every process that fails this test shall either be amended or eliminated;
- That there is urgent need for NIMASA to engage relevant Agencies with a view to initiating measures designed to develop passenger, containerized, wet and dry cargo transportation in Nigeria’s internal waterways;
- That calculation of NIMASA’s 3% levy on all wet cargo shall be based on freight ton which is Cubic Measurement (CBM), and;
That in line with the provisions of the MARPOL Convention, all tankers operating in Nigerian waters are required to have in place adequate and sufficient insurance cover to minimize the risk of losses sequel to oil spills and tanker accidents.