The Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) Dr. Dakuku Peterside has disclosed that the agency was pursuing an International Standard certification for Nigerian ship registry to give it global respect.
Dakuku said this in Lagos on Monday at a brief ceremony to mark the official submission of the report that was created to look into how the Nigerian ship registry can be improved.
The committee was set up on February 27, 2018 to specifically look into the flaws in Nigerian ship registry and come up with recommendations on how to bring it up to international standard.
He said the Nigerian Ship Registration Office under the NIMASA is being repositioned for greater global recognition and respectability, even as he added that a review committee set up to address challenges in the registry has completed its assignment.
He added that the ship registry was central to the technical integrity of the nation’s flagged vessels and could have positive effects on ship finance, seafaring and the technical integrity of the nation.
According to him, “If your vessel flies the Nigerian flag and the Nigerian ship registry commands respect, global financial institutions would be willing to transact with you because they know about the integrity of the Nigerian flag. It means you can access their loans at a competitive rate. There are opportunities for funding out there but if your flag doesn’t command respect people would deal with you with caution”
He also noted that a respected ship registry attracts the best seafarers and enhances the opportunities for the country’s seafarers.
“If a seafarer has worked for a British flag ship before, as a result of the credibility of that ship registry it is assumed that that seafarer is capable. So, an improvement in the Nigerian ship registry would also mean better recognition and acceptability for the Nigerian seafarers.
“This would improve Nigeria’s reputation on the international scene and it gives operators access to finance in the global scene. In every dimension, the quality of your ship registry determines your credibility in the marketplace”, he added.
The ceremony was well graced by shipowners including: Alhaji Aminu Umar, President of Nigerian Shipowners Association (NISA) President Shipowners Association of Nigeria (SOAN) Dr. Mcgeorge Onyung, President Master Mariners, Capt Tajudeen Alao, Former DG of NIMASA, Temi Omatseye, among other dignitaries