NIMASA: Make our Waters from Ceremonial To Commercial View - Jamoh

NIMASA: Make our Waters from Ceremonial To Commercial View - Jamoh

The Director General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Dr. Bashir Jamoh at the Bullion Lecture for the 2023, said that there is need for total rethink of our waters, from a ceremonial to a commercial view, events such as Argungu Fishing Festival and others must be redesigned and repackaged from the standpoint of the blue economy.

“We must intentionally work to banish sea blindness amongst Nigerians, ensure shipyard expansion for shipbuilding and others,” he said.

He noted that the worth of the world’s Blue Economy at $24 trillion with Nigeria being the 7th largest in ocean resources potentials ahead of Brazil.

"Blue Economy is valued at $2.5 trillion per annum; 90 per cent of global trade volume is seaborne; 350 million jobs worldwide linked to fisheries; 34 per cent offshore crude production by aquaculture is the fastest growing food sector, providing 50 per cent of fish for humanity”.

“Nigeria is blessed with 850 kilometres (km) of coastline, 8,573 km of inland waterways, 200 Exclusive Economic Zone, twelve nautical miles territorial waters and six port complexies of Apapa, Tin Can, Onne, Port Harcourt, Warri and Calabar.

“In addition, Nigeria has 21 oil terminals and more than 10 jetties and 200 million production output. Twenty eight out of 36 states are accessible by water and linked to five neighbouring countries with 10,000 km of waterways that is navigable year-round”, he stated.

In his speech the President of the Shipowners Association of Nigeria, SOAN, Dr. Mkgeorge Onyung also said that the members of SOAN are fully ready to utilised the Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund, CVFF,.

Speaking at the Centre for Financial Journalism, the Bullion Lecture, held in Lagos, Civic Centre, Victoria Island with the theme “Banking on Blue Economy for Nigeria’s Economic Development.”

“We are not taking it as a grant, but a proper loan.

“The point is, we from SOAN, are a group of genuine ship owners. There is no member of our association that does not have a ship.

“Our members are already working with International Oil Companies and we adhere to international standards and rules. We are ready and responsible to take this facility.

“When one ship berths in our water, you will see that clearing agents and several others will be part of the business,” he said.

He commenced the Federal Ministry of Transportation and NIMASA Director-General, Dr Bashir Jamoh, for the CVFF.
On the issue of blue economy.à

“Just that the United Nations drew attention to it because of the increasing poverty that was going on across the world.

“When God created the oceans, he put 700,000 species inside the water. The number of creatures in the ocean is big enough to feed us, we are just 7.7 billion. God buried all the treasure in the ocean.

“Today, we have just found a cure for sea blindness, Jamoh just told us that sea blindness is a disease that is inflicting the maritime industry and the solution to that is maritime knowledge which he has impacted on us.

“Telling us to learn more about the ocean so that we can benefit from it and we need to tap into the benefits of the ocean,” he said.

He noted that another part of blue economy which had to do with ferries was that the need to have ships that could take 450 passengers at ago to boost water transportation.

“For us to sustain the tourism and ferry transportation and make Lagos a sea transport city, we must look at the future.

Chairman of the Bullion lecture, Mrs. Jean Chiazo-Anishere, SAN, stated that 
“It is just not for us to tap on the ocean resources, we need to ensure that it is sustained otherwise, we will not have anything to tap from.
“The sustainability of the blue economy is very key. It represents a significant opportunity for Nigerians to diversify it’s economy and create other ways for job creation and revenue generation by investing in things such as fisheries, aquaculture, maritime transport tourism and others.

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