Ultimate magazine theme for WordPress.

Blue Economy sustainability: Nigeria to partner other African countries – Amaechi

The Honourable Minister of Transportation, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi

The Federal Government of Nigeria has expressed its readiness to
cooperate with sister countries and development bodies to advance Africa’s
prosperity through the safe and sustainable use of the continent’s vast sea and
ocean resources.

The Minister of Transportation, Rt. Hon. Rotimi Amaechi, made
this known in his speech at the first Sustainable Blue Economy Conference,
which ended in Nairobi on Wednesday.

Amaechi, who conveyed Nigeria’s statement of commitment to the
blue economy initiative, said its growth was the most viable option for
Africa’s development in the wake of declining mineral and commodity

He said the high level participation in the
conference demonstrated the importance African countries attached to the Blue
Economy and their resolve to use the resources of the seas and oceans to
accelerate economic growth and reduce poverty to its barest minimum.

The Minister, who was represented by the Director-General of the
Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and Chairman of the
Association of African Maritime Administrations (AAMA), Dr. Dakuku
Peterside, stated, “As a country we are conscious of our responsibilities
and international obligations which have given rise to our endorsement and domestication
of key International Maritime Organisation (IMO) and other important African
Union continental instruments. 

“We are mindful and highly committed to our responsibilities to
protect our marine environment to ensure that our continent does not become
dumping ground for pollutants which can prevent exploration of ocean

Amaechi highlighted steps taken by the Federal Government to
mainstream the blue economy concept into its Economic Recovery and Growth Plan
(ERGP) to include formulation of a draft National Transport Policy, which
is awaiting approval of the Federal Executive Council. 

The policy, according to
him, will provide the platform to implement at the country level the framework
for the protection and sustainable exploitation of Africa’s maritime domain.
The government has also constituted a high-powered committee, coordinated by
the Federal Ministry of Transportation, to formulate and map out a roadmap to
align the Blue Economy regime with the country’s ERGP, Amaechi said.

Other steps include the drafting of a dedicated anti-piracy bill,
which is before the National Assembly, to provide the requisite framework for
the fight, prosecution and punishment of piracy and other related crimes in
Nigeria and the Gulf of Guinea, and approval for the acquisition of
intelligence gathering maritime domain awareness assets and military response
assets to fight pirates and make Nigeria’s maritime domain safe for economic

Amaechi said the Federal
Government was investing heavily in the development of new infrastructure, such
as deep sea ports and intermodal transport, to drive growth in the maritime
sector. “
All of these actions underscore the importance our government has
placed on the Blue Economy Concept,” he said.

He assured
that Nigeria was fully committed to Africa’s drive to harness the vast
potentials of its maritime domain, saying the country “will continue to
cooperate with sister countries and developmental bodies to advance the
prosperity of the African continent.”

In his words, “We pledge our commitment to the
overarching issues of addressing poverty, corruption, trade barriers, and all
those issues that have hindered growth.
 More particularly, Nigeria as a
country will prioritise the integration of Blue Economy into our circular economic
restoration and growth plan; we will leave no stone unturned to create
limitless opportunities for our people and lift them out of poverty. This is
our resolve as the most viable option we have for sustainable development is
commitment to the Blue Economy.”

Amaechi hoped that the conference would build on previous efforts
by African Heads of Government to develop comprehensive and coherent strategies
that address the Blue Economy, such as the African Integrated Maritime Strategy
2050 (AIMS 2050); African Maritime Transport Charter; 2016 African Charter on
Maritime Safety, Security and Development (Lome Charter); and “Agenda 2063”,
which Nigeria has signed on to.

The inaugural Sustainable Blue Economy Conference, which held from
November 26 to 28 in the Kenyan capital, had over 15,000 participants from
around the world. They gathered to discuss how to build a blue economy that
harnesses the potentials of oceans, seas, lakes and rivers to improve the lives
of people, particularly those in developing countries.

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.