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Why Nigerian Shipowners go to Togo for bunker supplies- Industry player

Mr. Aminu Umar, MD/CEO Sea Transport Nigeria

Majority of the bunker fuel that shipping companies consume in Nigeria
is got from neighbouring Lome, Togo.

The MD/CEO of Sea Transport Nigeria, Mr. Aminu Umar, told our
correspondent in an interview in Lagos that shipowners patronize Lome for bunker
fuel, because besides challenges facing refineries in Nigeria, government has
not encouraged the business of bunker supplies to ships.

Umar, who is also the President of Indigenous Shipowners Association
of Nigeria (NISA), said it was unfortunate that Nigeria considers everything
that has to do with the bunker supply to ships as illegal.

“We have to go to Lome for
bunker supply for our ships most of the time, because government does not
believe in the business of bunker supply to ships. So, now there is almost no
bunker business operator in Nigeria.

“Unfortunately, there is the erroneous belief that bunkering is all
about smuggling in Nigeria. But, bunkering is a legal business that is operated
all over the world. There are big companies with integrity that are into
bunkering business.

So far, we are
losing a lot of business in that area, business running into several millions
in dollars. People go to Lome to take the bunkers, because it is easier to do
so there. Remember that shipping is a global business and it most get bunker supplies
as regular consumable to work,” Umar said.

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