NIMASA begs NPA to take over its abandoned floating dock — eyes N12bn revenue  annually from the venture.

Abiola Seun

The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) said it’s projecting to generate N12billion yearly from the operations of its newly acquired multi-million dollar floating dockyard.

Speaking with newsmen in Lagos on Thursday to mark the first 100 days in office of the new management of NIMASA, Bashir Jamoh, Director General of NIMASA, said about N1billion will be generated monthly from the shipyard.

According to him, the agency has opened discussions with the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) and the intending managing partner to begin operation of the dockyard.

He said NIMASA is also expecting a job creation of about 350 Nigerians under five segments of the operation which is expected to provide employment to about 75 workers per department.

“We have been discussing with the Managing Director of the NPA to move our floating dock from its present location at the Naval Shipyard to the Continental Shipyard owned by the NPA.

” Though, we found out that there is an existing joint venture partnership between NPA and another company managing the Authority’s dockyard but because of our own floating dock, the NPA decided to move its dockyard to somewhere in Snake Island, and the NPA is also winding up its joint venture agreement with the company as we speak, ” he said.

According to him, NIMASA has also signed a memorandum of understanding with International Oil Companies (IOCs) that are doing business with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to be taking their ships to NIMASA’s dockyard for dry-docking when the dockyard begins full operations.

He assured that the agency would begin full operation of the floating dockyard any moment from now, adding that the agency intends to have managing partner to do the technical management of the dockyard.

He stated that  NIMASA would be filling in an application with the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) to approve the public-private partnership (PPP) arrangement for the management of the floating dockyard.

Jamoh said the NPA would come in as the owner of the Continental Shipyard, NIMASA as the owner of the floating dockyard while an independent player would be the technical managing partner.

Jamoh said the facility would also be positioned to make graduates from Maritime Academy of Nigeria (MAN), Oron spend their seatime.

On strengthening local participation in the sector, Jamoh said the administration is working hard to make the issue of ship financing assesible to all, disclosing that the Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (CVFF) would be disbursed before October this year.

On maritime security especially as regards Deep Blue project, Jamoh stated that NIMASA is presently at 85 percent stage in the acquisition of the platforms required for the complete take off the project, adding that it is only the local content aspect of the project that is remaining,  which was delayed by the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic.

Jamoh however noted that the agency in the last three months of the management has been receiving several commendations for its strict fight against piracy, sea robbery and other illegalities on the waterways as well as the entire Gulf of Guinea region.

“The major problem of maritime security is lack of platforms that is why NIMASA is investing heavily in the acquisition of special intervention vessels, special mission aircraft and helicopters that are due to arrive in August and January 2021 while some are already in Nigeria,” he added

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