The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), has said it will give at least $700 million from the Cabotage Vessels Financing Fund (CVFF) to Nigerian shipowners to buy ships.
Speaking at the Maiden edition of the Annual lecture organised by Nigeria Institute of Maritime Studies, University of Lagos (UNILAG), Bashir Jamoh, the director general of NIMASA, said that shipowners who are the beneficiary of the fund and the Primary Lending Institutions (PLIs), will provide $350 million to augment the $350million that’s in possession of the agency.
He said that the disbursement of the CVFF would create a huge number of jobs for the teeming unemployed Nigerian youths.
“NIMASA already have a total of $350 million as our contributions to the Fund while the PLIs and the local ship owners will contribute 35 percent and 15 percent respectively to acquire the targeted number of vessels.
“Besides using the Blue Economy to drive local shipping growth, the initiative will also awaken the nation’s dying marine insurance sub-sector. The Blue Economy initiative is everybody’s business as the benefits will also be for everybody,” he added.
Ademola Adegoroye, the Minister of State for Transportation, said that the Transportation Ministry will do everything to ensure that the CVFF is disbursed before the end of the current administration.
He said it will make it easier for Shipowners to acquire more ships with a view to growing the Blue Economy initiative.
According to him, if the fund couldn’t be disbursed in the current administration, the incoming administration which is also of the All Progressive Congress (APC), would ensure disbursement.
According to him, “The fisheries sub-sector is another area the government is working very to create jobs for our people and make water transport easier for Nigerians. Absolutely, that is what every responsible government would do, but I can assure you that government will do everything to make it easier for Shipowners to get more ships for us to continue growing our blue economy.
“It makes sense for every responsible government to do that, once it gets too expensive, it becomes a problem even for our economy. We are hoping and praying that we disbursed the fund before the end of the current administration, we have a short time, we have barely eight weeks but I know they are working day and night to achieve this. It is possible during this administration and if not, the government is a continuum. It is a policy of the government and nobody can do anything about it,” he said.