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NIMASA killing shipping industry by withholding $100m cabotage fund—NSIA

There are serious indications that the current leadership of the Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), may have balkanized the togetherness existing between all associations of ship operators in Nigeria.

Otherwise, since this year, discordant voices have been coming from the main shipping bodies.

Whereas a section sees the leadership of Dr. Dakuku Peterside at NIMASA as the best, others kept on decrying the official delay by NIMASA in the disbursement of the over $100m Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (CVFF), statutorily domiciled in the agency.

Only recently, the Nigerian Ship Owners Association (NSIA) has urged the Federal Government to intervene in the delayed disbursement of the over $100m Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund.

Business Hilights recalls that the fund, set up to reinvigorate the indigenous shipping sub-sector, is currently warehoused by the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency and has been growing in the last 14 years since the Cabotage and Inland Shipping Act, 2003 was enacted.

In an interview, President, NISA, Mr. Aminu Umar, said ship owners were worried over the non-disbursement of the fund, adding that there was no improvement in shipping business in the country due to paucity of finance.

According to him, “We hope that in 2018, NIMASA will come up with the intervention fund for ship owners, because the fund is already there. We want to see improvement in our operations”.

“There is a need for the government to make the CVFF transparent so that our members will have access to it. So far, we do not know why the CVFF has not been disbursed and the government has not told us why.”

The only comment so far made by NIMASA since the trending clamour for the release of the CVFF is that there are documentation issues holding back the disbursement of the fund, but failed to give details after all.

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