Lagos - The incoming administration of General Muhammadu Buhari has been enjoined to pay particular attention to the maritime sector.
"This is in view of the tremendous contributions it can make to the economy in the face of decline in crude oil income."
Captain Niyi Labinjo, President of the Nigerian Ship Owners Association (NISA), stated this in a congratulatory message to Buhari in Lagos on Monday.
The message said the Nigerian maritime industry had the potential of generating N7 trillion annually for government. According to the message, the Nigerian maritime is rich in hydrocarbons, minerals and aquatic resources.
"Unfortunately, the maritime potential of Nigeria has remained largely untapped over the years by past administrations.
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"This is evident in our crude oil sale policy which is on Free On Board basis while the over 170 million population depend largely on imports which are on Cost Insurance Freight.
"Over the years, the implementation of our shipping policies and regulations had no significant effect on the Gross Domestic Product.
"This is despite the cabotage regime and Nigerian Content Development Act as shown in the complete absence of the maritime sector in the recent rebasing of the economy," Labinjo said.
He added that the maritime industry was capable of generating more than five million direct and indirect employments in next four years.