By Lucy Ogalue
Minister of State for Transport, Senator Gbemisola Saraki, urged stakeholders to seek sustainable solutions that will establish the desired synergy, collaboration and connective interaction in the maritime sector.
In a statement, the ministry’s press and public relations director, Eric Orjiekwe, Saraki, said Nigeria cannot develop without a dynamic national maritime transport policy.
She tasked stakeholders to review the draft policy document.
“New ideas, innovations and strategies generated in the forums when incorporated into the draft policy, would allow the sector to compete more favorably in the global market.
“It will also ensure substantial contributions to Nigeria’s economy and development,” she said.
Saraki recognized that the contribution of all stakeholders in the maritime sector was needed to produce a policy that would serve as an implementation tool to foster sustainable growth of the sector and the country as a whole.
She said this would ensure maximum economic benefit to the maritime sector, to the national economy and, therefore, raise the profile of the sector globally.
She said her arrival on board would play her rightful role in job creation, income generation, foreign exchange earnings and entrepreneurial skills for our growing economy.
Also speaking, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Transport, Dr Magdalene Ajani, said that politics is the foundation for the development of any nation and any sector.
Ajani, represented by the director of maritime safety and security at the ministry, Dr Paul Adalikwu, said the development of the policy was therefore essential to the survival, sustainability and advancement of the maritime sector of the Nigeria.
Rtd. Nigerian Chamber of Shipping Captain Iheanacho Ebubeogu said in his remarks that the National Maritime Transport Policy was first drafted in 2016 but never fully implemented.
He expressed optimism that the forums would provide the necessary platform to offer contributions that are not only sought after by the country, but alongside the implementation and application of the Maritime Organization’s instruments. international (IMO).
The Chairman of the Technical Committee for National Maritime Transport Policy and Director of Maritime Safety and Security at the Federal Ministry of Transport, Dr Paul Adalikwu, said the maritime subsector lacks the most essential facilities needed for acceptable planning, projections, strategy and implementation.
Adalikwu said this has reduced the ability of key players to have a substantial impact on the national and global economy.
“Stakeholder engagement offers everyone the opportunity to understand the different perspectives, roles and desires of each player in the industry,” he added. (NOPE)
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