NPA's Managing Director noted that according to the sustainable development goals (SDGs), there is need for inclusiveness and gender equality, in order to achieve the best for the world. She also claimed that only 2% of the workforce are women with jobs in positions such as administration, marketing, communications, law.

Moreover, Ms. Usman stood against the influence of traditional and religious practices which exclude women from certain career opportunities.

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"There should be a concerted efforts at ensuring that more women get into professions in maritime sector and remain there with the prospect that will attain the management cadre."

To address this situation, young girls should be encouraged to take interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), in order to pursue career in Shipping, Marine, Operations and Engineering Sub-Sectors, Hadiza Bala Usman believes.

In addition, she called for the establishment of specialized institutions and the provision of incentives/scholarships for girls, while also insisting that a mentoring system would invariably impact on the number of girls who enter the marine sector.

What is more, she reminded stakeholders that it is necessary to ensure good working conditions for women in the sector, pointing out that platforms must be provided.

She concluded by saying that in order to achieve efficient Port operations and raise the bar in productivity, human capacity must be developed.