• Thursday, June 20, 2024
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BusinessDay

Maritime media tasks FG on scanners, Cabotage fund, others

NRC restarts container haulage from Lagos to Kano, Kaduna Port

Following the recent hike in the Peak Season Surcharge on Nigeriabound cargoes, maritime media under the auspices of the Shipping Correspondents Association of Nigeria (SCAN), has urged the government to be sincere with the planned disbursement of the Cabotage Vessels Financing Fund ( CVFF) in order to grow indigenous vessel ownership.

“With the nation’s huge cargo advantage, it should be able to not only retain the huge expenses on patronage of foreign vessels but significantly dictate how its shipping affairs are run,” said a statement by Yusuf Babalola, its president.

According to him, there is also need for the provision of scanners, to be used by the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) to ease cargo clearance at ports.

“No nation serious about efficient cargo handling still prides itself with 100 percent physical cargo inspection. Also, cargo haulage to and from the port must be made less cumbersome to truckers in order to reduce cost,” he said.

He however urged the Federal Government and heads of maritime agencies to end the entrenched corruption on the port roads, over which truck owners and drivers have repeatedly stopped work to protest the extortion by security operatives.

Babalola however commended the recent synergy among the heads of Nigerian maritime agencies in their efforts to ensure ease of doing business in the sector.

“Already, issues such as maritime security, multimodal transportation and ports/cargo clearance issues, among others are receiving attention, and if implemented with due commitment, the hopes of making the nation’s ports, the sub-regional hub would be realised soon,” Babalola noted.-