Plans for a national shipping line remains on course with the committee saddled with its implementation already working on the support-industries and institutions to ensure a sustainable and effectiveA�carrier, the Executive Secretary of Nigerian Shippers Council (NSC), Mr. Hassan Bello, has said.
A�A�A�Bello told newsmen that among the necessary components for the envisaged ideal national fleet are the support-industries, stating: a�?people think it is just to go and buy ships, or that to have a national fleet is to go and pluck them somewhere.
A�A�A�a�?Our national fleet implementation committee has been working very hard. We want to create a sustainable national fleet, one that will work. So we are thinking of other industries that will support it.
A�A�A�a�?We are talking about ship repair, shipyard, cleaning up with NIMASA (Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency), the national registry; reforms in the Nautical College at Oron. All these are what will support the national fleet.
A�A�A�a�?You dona��t just bring one ship and say this is national fleet, without a supporting collateral industry for the shipping fleet.a�?
A�A�A�Meanwhile, Bello described the National Transport Commission Bill (NTC) as one of the major reform bills that would encourage private sector participation in the industry, adding that a�?the various reform bills in the transport industry will make for greater participation in the private sector.
A�A�A�a�?It will free transport from bureaucracy and allow transport to make a profound impact on the national economy. So, the national transport commission is supposed to regulate interests; it is an economic regulator (of) a multi-sector that will guide entrance and exit. It improves competition, safeguards standard and also looks over pricing.a�?
A�A�A�To the advantage of the NSC in terms of efficiency and competency, Bello said: a�?If we look at all these things, it is what Nigerian Shippers Council has been doing. One thing about this bill is that it has the total support of the minister of transportation and more importantly, total support of stakeholders in the industry.a�?