The Nigerian shipping sector is poised to takeover from oil and gas as the largest revenue earner for the Federal Government. This was disclosed by the director general of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) Dr. Dakuku Peterside at the 5th Nigeria Transport Awards and Lecture held in Lagos.
Peterside said that the benefits of the oil and gas sector and other vibrant economic impacting sectors cannot be reaped without shipping, as the sector provides the wheel upon which trade thrives. He also stated that for Nigeria to successfully diversify its economy there is need to advance the nation’s maritime interest, being a sector capable of taking over from oil as the country’s leading revenue earner in the nearest future. Dr. Peterside who was represented at the event by the Agency’s Director of Administration and Human Resources, Mr. Akin Akinyosoye said that the Maritime sector is of critical significance to the Nigerian economy, particularly, given that the nation is endowed with a vast coastline as well as navigable inland waterways adding that Nigeria is strategically placed on the Atlantic Coast of West Africa.
In his words, “Shipping is essential to the proper operation of any country’s economy and a vital part of a nation’s transport infrastructure, it is no gain saying that a Nation such as ours blessed with about 853km coastline and 200 nautical miles exclusive economic zone apart from the abundance of mineral resources that are domiciled in every nook and cranny of our country needs to be harnessed through shipping to create a positive economic impact” the DG said.
The NIMASA DG intimated that the Agency is working assiduously to ensure that the country’s maritime domain is safe and secure for shipping activities, hence the Agency is leading the charge in coordinating other African Nations to tap into maritime opportunities across the continent.