Indigenous Ship Owners told to Grab Growth Opportunities in Local Content

Simbi Kesiye Wabote,

Piriye Kiyaramo

Engr Simbi Kesiye Wabote, Executive Secretary/CEO of Nigerian Content Development Management Board (NCDMB) has tasked indigenous ship owners not to let a golden growth opportunity slip out of their hands as it is collaborating with the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) to enforce compliance with relevant sections of the Coastal and Inland Shipping (Cabotage) Act.

The Executive Secretary/CEO of NCDMB disclosed this in Lagos, Tuesday, while making a presentation entitled “A New Focus on an All-inclusive Stakeholders’ Policy/Regulatory Regime for the Growth of the Nigerian Maritime Industry” at the 2018 annual workshop and dinner organized by the Shipowners Association of Nigeria (SOAN).

He stated that the agency’s maritime utilization and categorization strategy was hinged on promoting and sustaining growth in the indigenous ownership of vessels, enforcing the utilization of Nigerian–owned marine vessels, while promoting and sustaining growth in the indigenous ownership of vessels.

“The strategy also aims at increasing the capacity of local shipyards to build, service and maintain maritime vessels of various sizes. Developing and maintaining a healthy pool of skilled marine operators and seafarers is also a major thrust of NCDMB’s maritime utilization and categorization strategy”, Wabote stated.

On the 2019 Vessel Demand Forecast, Wabote told the forum comprising ship owners, leadership of various maritime regulatory agencies and other stakeholders that within the period 2014 – 2018, Marine Vessel Analysis concerning vessel category indicated that vessels in category 1 were more in demand.

Category 2 vessels accounted for 34 percent of vessels demanded, while vessels in category 3 accounted for 12 percent. Vessels in category 1 and 2, he stated, accounted for 87 percent of vessels utilized in the period, 2014- 2018.

“Volume of transaction for Category 1 vessels will be higher (49 percent) compared to Category 2 (23 percent) and Category 3 (28 percent). Vessels in Category 1 and 2 account for 72 percent of vessels that will be in demand over the period 2019-2023,” he announced.

On industry expenditure on marine vessels over the period 2014-2018, this stood at $ 3.047 million. Industry expenditure of $21217 billion on category 1 of marine vessels accounted for 73 percent of total funds spent on marine vessels compared to $393 million or 13 percent for category 2 and $ 437 million or 14 percent for category 3 vessels. Category 1 and 2 vessels account for 86 percent of industry spending.

He said Nigeria’s maritime sector has continued to grow especially in oil and gas industry even as the NOGICD Act has provided the framework for inter-agency collaboration and the enabling environment for vessel ownership top thrive.

The NCDMB continues to implement various data-driven initiatives aimed at sustainable growth of the maritime sector. He noted how important it is that stakeholders are identified and carried along for an all-inclusive support for the successful realization of targeted objectives.

Wabote stated that the shipowners should be encouraged to adopt best-in-class stakeholders’ management practice to enhance the realization of their vision to lead Nigeria to self-sustenance in the shipping industry.

“I also urge you to continually review your business models even as ship owners. The economic benefits from marine vessel transactions are enormous and extend into other sectors.

“The $600 million per year forecast revenue from the engagement of marine vessels for the upstream sector will positively impact on the financial and insurance institutions if a large chunk is retained in-country.

“The downstream sector also presents opportunities considering the huge logistics required to meet our daily energy demand. These are areas you should consider for growth. Other opportunities include vessel construction, repair and maintenance, auxiliary services for catering companies, waste management and a host of other opportunities”, he told the SOAN members.