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FG urged to remove waiver clause from Cabotage Act

by Business News Report

 Chairman, Nigeria Ship Owners Association (NISA) Chief Isaac Jolapamo has appealed to the Federal Government to remove the waiver clause from the Coastal and Inland Shipping Act (Cabotage Act of 2013). Jolapamo made the appeal in Lagos at the 2014 Nigeria Maritime Expo with the theme: “100 years of Maritime Development in Nigeria’’.

He said that the removal of the waiver clause would improve the business of indigenous ship owners. “The removal will help to address the plight of indigenous ship owners whose businesses have been damaged,’’ Jolapamo. He said this and other factors had caused NISA members to owe banks about N500 billion. Jolapamo said that it was sad that indigenous ship owners were not doing well in spite of the fact that they started maritime business in Nigeria. He also urged the government to implement the report of the Presidential Committee on Development of the Maritime Industry to assist NISA.

The NISA chairman chronicled the role shipping played in the pre-independence period, adding that the sector had enormous potential to grow the economy. Mallam Habibu Abdullahi, Managing Director, Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), said that the recent reform at the ports had improved business activities in the maritime sector. Abdullahi said that the reform had also increased the volume of cargo throughput at the ports.

According to him, this has earned the NPA more revenue, which is a proof of the on-going infrastructural development and renewal projects at the nation’s ports. Mr Greg Ogbuefo, a former Chairman of NIMAREX, commended the Federal Government on its various policies to develop the maritime industry. Ogbuefo said that the act and policies would encourage indigenous players in the sector.

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