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FG seeks investors’ confidence in maritime

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FEDERAL government is making bold efforts to restore investors confidence, even as it has identified functional regulatory framework as the key element needed in the sector to scale up investors’ confidence in the entire transport sector.

The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha Mustapha, who made the call during the Stakeholders’ Appreciation Night, organised by the Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC) in Lagos, said that the investors’ confidence was needed to attract investors who would take advantage of the blue economy.

Mustapha, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Political and Economic Office of the Secretary to the Federal Government, Gabriel Aduda,stressed the need for transport industry sector reform to unbundle the existing tripartite roles of public agencies; as investors, operators and regulators for the creation of a robust-resourced multi sector for the maritime industry.

The benefits of Multi-Service Regulations in a growing economy like Nigeria, among others include the following: economics of scale.

“That is sharing of fixed costs, scarce talents and other resources. The benefit of regulation also include building expertise in cross-cutting regulatory issues such as tariff adjustment rules and competition and smart inter l-modal regulations that will reduce over-dependence on one sector,as the case now, where 90 per cent of passengers and freight are transported by road,” Mustapha said.

He said that a robust intermodal regulation should cover rail, water and land transportation, adding that the regulation should also promote effective competition and economic efficiency.

Mustapha said that there was need to enhance safety standards at the same time preserving the environment.
He said that the National Assembly had passed the National Transport Commission Bill earlier this year, but government was sorting some technicalities and use of language, that would border on overlap of functions with other agencies and need to be clearly delineated.

The secretary to the federal government said that as soon as that was sorted, “we should have a befitting law for the good of the whole”.

He said that the executive was committed to playing its role in the passage of the bill into law.
Mustapha said that the fundamental goal of Nigeria’s transport policy was to develop an adequate, safe, environmentally-sound and efficient transport system in the context of a progressive and competitive economy.

In his welcome address, the Chairman, Board of Directors, NSC, Mai-Mala Munu, commended the stakeholders for cooperating with the maritime sector of Nigerian economy.

Munu, who was represented by a board member of the council, Mr Seyi Oduntan, said that the providers and the users of the shipping service should ensure level-playing field for the stakeholders in the sector.

He said that the NSC encouraged hard work in spite of the constant congestion on the port access road, saying that players had refused to withdraw their services from Nigeria.

Munu said that the occasion was aimed at appreciation of stakeholders perseverance in continuing their shipping business in Nigeria.

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