The Executive Secretary of Nigerian Shippers Council (NSC), Mr Hassan Bello, has said the country lost $25 billion to foreign ship owners between 2015 and 2017.

Bello, disclosed this when the Nigerian Fleet Implementation Committee paid a courtesy visit to the Minister of Budget and Planning, Senator Udoma Udo Udoma, recently in Abuja Bello, said over $9.08 billion was paid as freight for dry and wet cargos to foreign ship owners in 2015 due to the absence of Nigerian-owned fleet plying the international route.

He disclosed that the committee was to examine the possibility of using existing shipping companies to run a Nigerian fleet and provide guidelines on procedures of establishing a shipping company. Stressing that for government to realise its programme, a conducive environment backed by strong political will with incentives to operators, had to be in place.

He, however, said the ministry of budget and planning played an important role in fiscal policy direction of government. On his part, Udoma stated that his ministry would work with relevant agencies to resolve the issues and support the committee fully.

Source: THIS DAY