NIMASA Says Cabotage Law Is Not In Conflict With Local Content Policy

L-R ,The Representative of NIMASA DG, Mrs Anna Akpan, Assistant Director Shipping Development of the Agency, MARAN President, Mr Anya Njoku, Fmr MARAN President, Mr Dele Aderigber and other on the high table at Maran event on Tuesday.

Posted by Maritime Newsroom

The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety agency (NIMASA) has assured Nigerians particularly operators within the maritime/shipping and oil & gas logistics sub sectors that the two industries are not in conflict in anyway, rather the Local Content Development Act 2010 and the Nigerian Coastal Inland Shipping (Cabotage) Act, 2003 are meant to complement each other to overall development of the nation’s economy.

Speaking in Lagos on Tuesday at a one-day seminar organised by the Maritime Reporters Association of Nigeria (MARAN)the Director General,Dr.Dakuku Peterside who spoke on the topic “The Role of Shipping in Oil and Gas Logistics Services”, as given to the agency by the organisers but chose to rephrase the topic such: ”The Role of Shipping in Oil and Gas Logistics: Need for Synergy in the Implementation of Nigeria Coastal and Inland (Cabotage)Act, 2003 and the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development Act, 2010” said the two laws were not meant to conflict with each other nor to rubbish each other but were enacted to the good and development of both sector and the betterment of the nation at large.

The DG therefore called for cooperation between the two important sectors of the economy, saying both the shipping cabotage law and the oil and has local content initiatives of the government are all for development of the country and its economy.

The DG who was represented at the event by an assistant director in the Shipping Development of the agency, Mrs. Anna Akpan said that the oil and gas sectors of the economy accounts for 90 per cent of the total revenue that comes to the country but contributes less than 20 per cent.

He stated that the Coastal Inland (cabotage) Act, 2003 in the maritime sector and the Local Content Development Act, 2005 in the oil and gas sector too are capable of bringing development and building capacity up to 70 pee cent.

He said while the cabotage law deals with the shipping/maritime the local content policy is for the oil and gas sector and both of them are very important and are meant to complement each other.

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L-R ,The Representative of NIMASA DG, Mrs Anna Akpan, Assistant Director Shipping Development of the Agency, MARAN President, Mr Anya Njoku, Fmr MARAN President, Mr Dele Aderigber and other on the high table at Maran event on Tuesday.
L-R ,The Representative of NIMASA DG, Mrs Anna Akpan, Assistant Director Shipping Development of the Agency, MARAN President, Mr Anya Njoku, Fmr MARAN President, Mr Dele Aderigber and other on the high table at Maran event on Tuesday.
R-L,Dr Emeka Enebeli, Mr Otunba Kunle, Mrs Anna Akpan,Capt Tony
Mrs Anna Akpan giving her speech
he agency called for a thorough training of seafarers and cadets who can take over the aging ones in line with the succession plan.

Peterside maintained that NIMASA has the sole responsibility to implement the cabotage law.

”NIMASA as a regulatory agency is responsible for the implementation of the cabotage law which is the maritime specific local content policy, have decided to dwell on the synergy that is required between both in driving the local content development in Nigeria oil and gas logistics in Nigeria.”

On how the two sectors can work together for growth both sectors and Nigeria’s economy, the agency said: ”The relationship between both sectors are very important.”

The NIMASA boss said,over 70 per cent of Nigeria’s crude production oil are being transported by more ships and more rigs activities being carried off-shore. To show that the oil and gas sector relies heavily on the shipping logistics transport…”, the DG added.

Giving his good will message, the National President of the Association for Shipping Petroleum and Freight Logistics of Nigeria (ASPFLN), Dr. Martons Chukwuemeka Enebeli called on those in positions of authority to do their work right to position the country in its rightful place.
The ASPFLN national president,Dr Enebeli who is also the national president of Ship Chandlers Association of Nigeria, equally called on the media, particularly the Maritime Reporters Association of Nigeria(MARAN) to use their power as given to them by 1999 constitution to make leaders do their job and became accountable for such.

”The media especially MARAN to use the power given to them by section 22 of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria which mandates them to hold the leaders accountable for Nigerians.”

Dr. Enebeli equally alleged that over 200 Nigerian seafarers are currently languishing in prison for flimsy reasons.”

On his response, the lead speaker at the seminar, Dr. Kunle Folarin, the National Chairman National Seafarers Welfare Board of Nigeria (NSWBN), who paper presentation had the topic: ”Seafarers Perspectives on Local Content Development on Oil and Gas Shipping Logistics Operations” hinted that Nigeria as a country for the past few years has spent over $150 billion to support foreign trade but has nothing positively to show for it.
”Nigeria as spent about $150 billion to support foreign trade in the last few years, but the question is how much are we getting back?”
He also regretted that Nigeria has 200 exclusive economic zones, over 870 km coastlines and yet cannot exploit them for the good of the country.
Dr. Folarin who acknowledged that seafarering is one of the oldest profession in the world and that they account for over 70 per cent of total employment worldwide, while defining a seafarer as a person onboard a vessel. Saying in maritime sector alone there are 57 different professions.
The NSWBN chairman lamented that of over 4000 ships that trade on Nigerian waters which are capable of giving about 5000 Nigerians job but unfortunately, 70 per cent of them are foreigners.

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