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Policies designed to drive Blue Economy coming, Minister tells NSC, CRFFN

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The Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Adegboyega Oyetola has assured that the Federal Government will not only provide conducive working environment for the Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC) and Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN), new policies designed for the promotion of Blue Economy is underway.

According to him, the new policies will amongst other things, facilitate the disposal of overtime cargoes at all the ports in the  country and pave way for effective  and efficient service delivery..

The Minister of Marine and Blue Economy; Adegboyega Oyetola disclosed this recently during a working visit to the NSC Headquarters and CRFFN in Lagos.

Oyetola  assured the Council that government would look into their challenges and effect necessary reforms where needed for the success of the Blue Economy agenda of the current administration.

The Minister who was pleased  with the contributions and level of achievements recorded by the Management of the Council, however, decried the deplorable condition of the ports, saying  “the rots and cracks in the ports infrastructure, over staying of cargoes at the ports, excesses of foreign fishing firms is discouraging”.

He added that long bureaucratic processes are major factors responsible for elongated cargo clearance time, thereby frustrating shippers and leading to the jettisoning of their containers at ports.

The Minister stated that he would engage the leadership of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) on the issue of abandoned cargoes at the ports in a bid to evacuate overtime cargoes and address other bottlenecks.

Speaking earlier in his welcome address, the Executive Secretary of the NSC, Hon. Emmanuel Jime, highlighted issues requiring urgent attention to include the amendment of NSC Act to institute effective port economic regulation.

In addition, Jime said  that the NSC is a laboratory where policy making that drives the marine space is being regulated, adding that its objective is to ensure that Nigeria is the Maritime Hub in the sub- Western Region.

The NSC boss disclosed that the actualization of one-percent (1%) freight stabilization fee on import and export to Shippers Council as enshrined in the NSC Subsidiary Legislation; implementation of the International Cargo Tracking Note (ICTN); establishment of a National Fleet, among others are the current concerns of the council.

He however, expressed his confidence in the administration of the new Miinister adding that the Minister has displayed passion towards creating impact in theg maritime sector.

Furthermore, the Minister also  visited the Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN), where the Acting Registrar, Chinyere  Uromta appealed to the Minister to reconsider the Federal Government’s decision to exclude CRFFN from the National budgetary allocation, emphasizing on the crucial roles the Council plays in the  freight forwarding sector.

According to her, CRFFN has brought so much sanity in the logistics of supply chain subsector and the Nigerian shipping industry. Hitherto, the era was characterized by missing cargoes.

Furthermore she said CRFFN is a Federal regulatory Agency and doubles as international regulator of freight forwarding practice in global setting. ” The Council is existing for the good and growth of Nigerian economy”. She added.

Uromta asserted that the CRFFN jurisdiction includes marine, aviation (cargo airport) and land borders. “Our establishing Act portrays us as a professional body and not a regulatory agency and we are making a clarion call for urgent amendment to CRFFN Act”.

In response, the Hon.  Minister commended the Council’s efforts and expressed willingness to consider their request.

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