Maritime agencies, under the Federal Ministry of Transportation, have reached an agreement to digitise their internal processes while also maintaining focus on actualising the National Single Window regime in the nation’s transportation sector.
A statement by the Assistant Director, Public Relations, the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, Osagie Edward, said the agreement was reached at the 4th Heads of Maritime Agencies meeting held in Lagos.
According to the statement, the Registrar of Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria, Sam Nwakohu, who spoke after the meeting, had disclosed that full automation of the internal processes of the various agencies was a pre-requisite to achieving the much-anticipated National Single Window regime in the sector.
Nwakohu, who chaired the meeting, said the chief executive officers of various agencies had agreed on timelines to achieve full automation of internal processes.
“We have agreed that all Agencies under the Ministry of Transportation should as a matter of priority, attain full automation. This process will be well coordinated and we also gave ourselves timelines to achieve this,” he said.
It will be recalled that the maiden edition of the meeting was in 2020, with the aim of enhancing synergy and cooperation of parastatals under the supervision of the ministry, which was intended for a more effective and efficient maritime sector.
On his part, the Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, Dr. Bashir Jamoh, said that NIMASA automation processes had reached over 80 per cent.
Jamoh also assured the gathering that NIMASA’s commitment to automation was aimed at reducing human interface, while also plugging revenue leakages in the system.
“In line with the Federal Government’s Executive Order on Ease of Doing Business, we are committed to full automation to attain reduction of human interface in majority of our transactions with our stakeholders and this is in our bid to ensure transparency and professionalism which the sector requires to grow.
“The goal is to align with the National Single Window initiative, when all the internal processes of the various Agencies have been concluded,” he said.
Commenting on high freight rate occasioned by the War Risk Insurance placed on Nigerian bound vessels, the NIMASA DG stated that the agency would focus on creating the awareness, while also canvassing for a review from the international community.
According to him, the move was in relation to the removal of Nigeria from the global piracy list.
“It may interest you to know that by the end of this quarter, which is the end of June, we would have recorded another milestone as we are yet to record a single attack or incident of maritime insecurity on our waters. Therefore, we will keep advocating for the total removal of War Risk Insurance by the international community, so that Nigerians can benefit from that,” Jamoh stated.
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