Organised by NIMASA in conjunction with the IMO and the UN Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) in Lagos, the workshop heard that the Maritime Transport Plan and Strategy, when fully completed, will also provide a robust enabling framework for achieving Nigerian maritime objective and foster Public, Private sector collaboration and inter-regional cooperation.

As the African Continent forges ahead with phase II negotiations for the creation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AFCFTA), the maritime sector remains critical to seamless trade and effective economic integration between African nations, added Amaechi, represented by the Director General of NIMASA, Dr. Dakuku Peterside.

Our approach, therefore, towards the realization of the SDG is contingent on our joint effort and ability to put in place the much needed cooperation framework in collaboration with critical stakeholders using the maritime sector as a veritable tool to promote agricultural development, food security, industrialization and economic transformation of our nations, the region and the entire continent,

...he said.

On his part, the NIMASA DG, stated there is the need for the leaders of the various countries in the continent to understand the workings of the maritime sector, as maritime transportation plays an important role in a nation’s economic development.

He also emphasised the need to help the leaders understand why it is important to mainstream maritime sector in economic plan and economic strategies of the various countries.

As a country, we align with the initiative of the IMO to mainstream maritime transportation and the maritime sector to the economic planning of our various nations and also in the strategic planning. Not only are we going to mainstream maritime transport to the economic strategies of our various countries, there is being a shift from looking unto other countries for assistance to working with other countries, international partners in a cooperative and collaborative manner,

...he stated.

The two-day workshop, "A process to mainstream the maritime sector", is to create a forum for all the key players and stakeholders involved in the Cooperation Framework process to meet, establish the necessary contacts, which will be needed for future collaboration and for the inclusion of maritime in the mainstream of their economic strategies towards economic growth.