Massive investment in ports infrastructure would increase the contribution of the maritime sector into the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
The Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Hadiza Bala-Usman made this assertion while reiterating the need for more players in the sector.
The NPA boss noted that port infrastructure being built by the government and assets acquired under her leadership are key in improving efficiency at the port as Nigeria looks towards improving maritime sector contribution to GDP.
“To achieve our objectives, we need to have tugboats that have capacity for larger and bigger container vessels to come and efficiently berth in our port,” she said.
She added that for the effective execution of its functions in all port locations, the authority was committed to continuous upgrade of facilities and equipment that will enhance service delivery.
“This commitment is to ensure that all the six functioning seaports are prepared for optimal performance at all times.
“This determination accounts for the purchase of these new tugboats, MT Musawa & MT Ikoro-Ekiti joining our other fleet of four namely: MT Daura, MT Ubima, MT Uromi and MT Majiya, which were commissioned in 2017,” she added.
In his speech, the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, stated that if anyone was in doubt as to the importance of the maritime sector to Nigeria and it’s global economy, the event of the past three months where ports across the world have remained open in spite of the comprehensive lockdown of virtually other sectors should instruct on why priority attention has to be given to the sector.
“Given the government’s determination to develop other sectors of the national economy and reduce reliance on the oil and gas sector, we have identified the pivotal role that the maritime sector occupies in the actualisation of the fundamental objectives of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) of this administration.