Nigeria Indigenous Ship Owners Association (NISA), has revealed that Nigeria loses $700 million (N137.9 billion) monthly to dominance of crude oil shipment by foreign shipowners.
Nigerian shipowners claim that Nigeria loses such a huge amount of money because foreign shipowners had dominated the transportation of crude oil, and urged the Federal Government to grant indigenous shipowners between 10 to 20 per cent allocation in lifting crude oil.
These foreign shipowners who do not employ Nigerians and do not pay taxes, load almost 70 to 77 crude oil vessels monthly out of Nigeria.
According to Umar, if government could allocate 10 per cent of crude oil shipment to indigenous shipowners, they would create jobs for the teeming youths, retain the proceeds in the nation’s banks and would also pay tax which would assist the government in its responsibilities.
The indigenous shipowners mentioned that freight earnings through the maritime industry could be an alternative source of revenue, while reiterating the association’s readiness to partner with government to check the shortcomings in crude oil trade.
Umar stressed that government’s policy had not been supporting indigenous shipowners, noting that there was zero participation by indigenous shipowners in the transportation of crude oil.
The association urged government to give indigenous shipowners maximum support and to also create a conducive environment for them to excel.
Identifying the recent changes in leadership of the maritime sector as the setback which had slowed the association down in arranging meetings with both the minister of transportation and heads of maritime agencies, Umar said that the association would like to partner with government for proper understanding of the maritime industry as an alternative to foreign exchange challenge confronting the nation.