Maritime stakeholders demand 10% lending rate for operators
Stakeholders in the maritime sector are urging the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to compel all commercial banks to provide, at least, a 10 per cent regime for those operating within the sector if it hopes to reposition the industry.
The stakeholders also provided a roadmap for the Muhammadu Buhari administration which they believe would guarantee efficient development of the sector within the next five years.
Maritime stakeholders and participants made this disclosure at the Maritime Platform National Discourse held recently in Lagos. The theme of the discourse was, “Nigerian maritime sector in the next five years: Deciding where we want to be”.
The participants said the CBN, in line with its monetary policy, should in the next four months compel commercial banks to provide the 10 per cent regime for the maritime sector, as it is doing presently with the agriculture and industry sectors.
They stated that with such a move, the maritime sector will have a guaranteed funding corridor to finance shipping development.
In a ten-point communiqué, maritime operators believe it is high time the federal government showed real commitment to turn maritime potentials into realities by supporting shipping development in the country.
The communiqué called on the federal government to, within the next three years, establish the much-needed maritime bank to fund maritime projects and meet the financial requirements of the sector.
It also told government not to allow foreign vessels carry Nigerian crude oil “because Nigeria has primordial advantage in domestic trade and indigenous shipowners must be encouraged to grow their fleets through adequate funding and the disbursement of the CVFF (Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund) to enable them acquire specialised crude-carrier vessels.”
L-R: French Ambassador to Nigeria, Denis Guaer; Chairman, UBA Plc, Mr. Tony Elumelu; and President of Movement for the Enterprises of France( MEDEF), Mr. Pierre Gattaz; at the luncheon organised by UBA for the 50-man French business delegation from MEDEF in Lagos Tuesday.