The seminar, which examined the implementation and realisation of the Cabotage and Local Content regimes, sought indigenous participation and local capacity development in both the maritime and oil and gas (upstream) sectors.
This, it hoped to achieve, through training and empowerment of stakeholders by creating opportunities for professional development in the shipping and maritime industry and facilitation of enlightenment campaigns to broaden knowledge and expertise.
NCS was formed in 2002 with the primary objective of ensuring that the domestic shipping industry participates fully in all commercial services in the Nigerian coastal waters and beyond.
The chamber has grown to become an umbrella body for all stakeholders in the maritime and shipping industry in Nigeria. It protects and promotes the interest of its members, securing for them maximum participation in Nigeria’s domestic and international trade.
NCS has also attained a unique position in the Nigerian maritime industry as it acts as a bridge between stakeholders: operators, government bodies, international organisations and local regulatory agencies.
The training, which creates a platform for information-sharing on cabotage and local content issues, gives a more practical and in-depth analysis of vessel funding, operations, insurance, environmental issues in the upstream sector and maritime security.
The programme featured a wide spectrum of participants from international oil companies (IOCs), banks, insurance and law firms, maritime agencies and regulatory bodies.
Courses were designed to give an in-depth understanding of the maritime oil and gas upstream business in Nigeria.
Indigenous operators, who want to finance the acquisition of offshore vessels, understand the litigation and alternative dispute resolution processes, comprehend vessel equipment inspections and surveys, appreciate environmental issues in upstream operations and have a clear understanding of the technical and commercial processes of the upstream sector, will find the courses very comprehensive and valuable.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, the Director General of NCS, Mrs. Ify Anazonwu-Akerele, decried the challenges facing the maritime industry.
“Several problems have beset the maritime industry mainly resulting from administrative ineptitude caused by the recourse to politicians and professionally unqualified persons as industry administrators leading to poor government maritime policy formulation, implementation and monitoring.
“Others are pervading corruption, inadequate official support to indigenous operators through cargo/crude lifting contracts to foreign companies hindering local capacity development, inadequate financial support, problem of globalisation and economic integration and lack of advanced technology acquisition to mention a few”, she added.
She however called on the government to create an enabling environment as well as budgeted incentives and subsidies for industry players.