The Director-General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dakuku Peterside, has stressed the need for skilled manpower to spearhead the development of the nation’s maritime industry.
This is contained in a statement by the Head of Public Relations Department in NIMASA, Lami Tumaka, on Friday in Lagos.
The statement said that Peterside said this when he led a delegation to a meeting with the United States Commercial Service, West Gulf Maritime Association and the Texas Southern University, Houston.
He mentioned the potential of the Nigerian market including its vast coastline and huge population.
The director-general called for greater collaboration with Nigeria's international partners to grow skilled indigenous manpower for the development of the Nigerian maritime industry.
``The industry is capable of taking over from oil as the nation’s highest revenue earner,’’ the News Agency of Nigeria quotes Peterside saying.
He said that the agency would need the expertise of the Texas Southern University on shore-based technical training of maritime personnel to improve on its capacity to regulate maritime activities in Nigeria.
Peterside called on members of the West Gulf Maritime Association to take advantage of the potential in the Nigeria maritime industry to invest in the sector.
The director-general assured the association of the agency's commitment to effectively end the scourge of piracy in Nigerian waters as well as regulate the sector for economic prosperity of all stakeholders.
In a welcome address, the Commercial Counsellor in the U.S. Embassy in Nigeria, Mr Richard Ryan, assured the director general of the cooperation of the embassy, adding that the embassy would forge closer commercial ties with NIMASA to grow the maritime sector in Nigeria.
According to the statement, other officials of the university who took turn to brief the delegation offered technical cooperation in the areas of capacity building, ICT -based Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR).
The officials also promised to provide assistance with the development of Electronic Cargo Tracking System (ECTS) to reduce revenue leakages.