National Fleet’ll Help Nigeria Lift Crude, Says Peterside
Nigeria will be able to lift its country’s crude oil for export immediately the national fleet comes into operation, the Director General of NIMASA, Dr Dakuku Peterside, has said.
Dakuku, who was speaking at a media breakfast meeting on the sidelines of the ongoing Nor Shipping Conference and Exhibition in Oslo, Norway, said such an outcome would end the capital flight associated with the present arrangement where Nigeria sold its oil on free on board basis to customers and would also lead to employment creation.
A statement quoted the NIMASA DG as saying that the new national fleet would be owned 49 per cent by a technical partner and 51 per cent by Nigerian investors.
He said the plan was to have Nigerian investors holding equity in lots, thereby avoiding shareholder domination.
He said the proposed national fleet would be private sector-led for sustainability and profitability, adding that local and foreign investors who were interested in the project should partner with the country.
He said, “The national fleet is part of the country’s new strategic direction on the blue economy, which is designed to tap its maritime potential.
“The opportunity in crude freight and right of first refusal to lift cargo generated by all tiers of government are just some of the many potential in the sector. “
Peterside gave the assurance that the country was also taking its maritime security serious and had invested in the acquisition of security assets to boost the policing of its waters.
He noted that the assets, acquired under the ‘Deep Blue Project’ would be operational by September.
Nigeria, he reminded his audience, was an investment friendly environment with comprehensive maritime security, a robust financial sector and six port complexes and numerous terminals, adding that the country accounted for 70 per cent of seaborne trade into west and central Africa and was endowed with a skilled workforce in addition to being the world’s ninth largest hydrocarbon deposits.