Nigeria to save N36bn annually using NIMASA floating dockyard- Dakuku Peterside


  …Facility to be operated on PPP Model
 
Left-Right: Director, Western Zone, NIMASA, Mr Olayemi Abbass, Director General, NIMASA, Dr Dakuku Adol Peterside and the Director, Strategic Reform, Mr Sani Muhammed at a Press Conference in Lagos.
Nigeria will be saved an annual capital flight of about N36 billion once the floating dockyard acquired by the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) becomes operational soon.

 The Director General of the Agency, Dr. Dakuku Peterside, disclosed this during an interactive session with journalist on Wednesday in Lagos.

Dr. Peterside also made known that the floating dockyard would be located at a facility of the Nigerian Navy, and be operated on a Public Private Partnership model.

The NIMASA DG said that the Floating Dockyard would commence operations immediately after the commissioning by President Muhammadu Buhari.

He added that when fully operational, Nigerian Shipowners and their foreign counterparts would no longer need to take their vessels outside the country for dry docking.

His words: “Nigeria loses up to $100m annually simply because when our shipowners need to dry dock their vessels, they mostly take them to neighboring countries like Ghana and Cameroun, thus spending avoidable forex. When this facility is fully operational it has the capacity to drydock any vessel incountry and save the much needed foreign exchange.”

Speaking further, Dr. Peterside noted that the facility would be operated in conjunction with the builders as technical partners.

He also assured that it would create thousands of jobs for teeming Nigerian youths as well as provide training opportunities for seafarers, adding that the NIMASA floating dockyard would also be available as a training facility for the students of the Nigerian Maritime University, Okerenkoko and other maritime institutions in the Country.

“We are planning to ensure that the permanent location of this facility would benefit our students for training and we have also engaged the builders to manage the facility for a one year period at a Naval facility” while further arrangements are being worked out,” he said.

Speaking on other issues, Dr. Peterside said that the Agency was working on a special foreign exchange intervention for vessel parts acquisition and loan repayment processes to enable indigenous operators compete favourably with their foreign counterparts.

He added that a team was working with the Central Bank of Nigeria on how best the policy could be implemented.

He said that was aside working towards the disbursement of the Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (CVFF) which would give room for a full-fledged Cabotage regime with more job opportunities created.

Commenting on the Agency’s Survey, Inspection & Certification Transformation Programme, Dr Dakuku Peterside disclosed that 3,752 Certificates of Competency (CoC) were issued in 2017 to successful Seafarers. Representing a 149 % increase from the CoCs issued in 2016.

Dr. Peterside said that the impact of this was the confidence of stakeholders who now willingly verify certificates without prompting.

He further said that a total of 1,880 certificates were authenticated for stakeholders in 2017 alone, a significant rise when compared to the 1013 CoCs verified in 2016.

The NIMASA DG added that the number of Nigerian Seafarers placed onboard vessels from January to June 2018  was 2,337 representing  58.9% increase in the number of seafarers employed, stating that the effort had led to job and wealth creation in line with the Federal Government Economic Recovery and Growth Plan, (ERGP).