Ilori speaks on reorganising the Nigerian Ship Registry for global standard

Engr. Emmanuel Ilori

The Nigerian Ship Registration Office has started harmonising all necessary factors for ensuring the attainment of global standard, considering high technical integrity of surveyors, automation processes as well as proper classification of vessels that would fly the Nigerian Flag.
Vice President of the Association of Marine Engineers and Surveyors(AMES), Mr. Emmanuel Ilori, chaired the committee on the review of the status of the Nigerian Ship Registration Office, with a view to addressing all its shortcomings and making necessary recommendations for its revitalisation.

Speaking in an interview earlier in the week, Ilori said the new automation process to boost the Nigerian Ship Registry would make ship registration time very favourable to all operations, just as the further technical training of surveyors would raise their technical integrity.

“The issue of surveyor development is very high on the agenda because one of the issues we discussed with the Lloyd’s Register relates to building the technical integrity of the Nigerian Ship Registry,”Ilori said.

He also disclosed that the big technical organisations had indicated willingness to support the technical development of Nigerian surveyors, so that Nigeria can have surveyors with some of the best standards in the world, which is part of raising the technical integrity.

He added that importantly, there would be no room for shoddy deals as all vessels for registration must satisfy global requirements for classification.

 “Now we are going to say okay, let us rebuild the ship registry that is based on quality, not sub-standard vessels. Going forward, you find that people who want to engage in sharp practices will not find the Nigerian Ship Registry a repository for them, because they know that the standards will change.

“Gone are the days when you go to the Nigerian Ship Registry where your ship will not be classed. Gone are the days when you want to operate sub-standard ships within the Nigerian Ship Registry.

“And they are going to start the process of automation of the Nigerian Ship Registry process, whereby the bad days when you have to wait up to six to nine months for your ship to be registered will be gone, because they will be improving the processes now, so that when you register, if there are issues, you get to know early,” he said.

Based on the committee’s findings and recommendations, Ilori hopes that the Ship Registration Office would engage a Manager, somebody dedicated, who understands the full process, who can interact with the shipowners in the ship registration process. 

A lot of positive change in this effort, Ilori said, is the fact that the financial community has started to see seriousness in Nigeria to begin to change some of the negative practices that had been dwindling their investments in Nigerian ships.

According to Ilori, they are opening up and now the Banks are beginning to advance facilities to purchase Nigerian vessels, which is showing that the confidence is coming back.

He noted that although some vessels were still with Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria(AMCON) , AMCON had also started  getting to accept that maybe it is time now to reset the Nigerian maritime Ship Registry.

Ilori also mentioned that NIMASA has started putting some of the recommendations into practice.