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Business

Port of Antwerp International expresses interest in Nigeria’s maritime transport policy

Nigeria’s maritime transport policy has attracted interest from the Port of Antwerp International.

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Bashir Jamoh, new Director General, NIMASA

Belgian executives of the Port of Antwerp International have announced their interest in Nigeria’s new Maritime Policy, through improved consultancy between Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and the Port of Antwerp.

This was disclosed by  Mr Philip Kyanet, Head, Corporate Communications, NIMASA, in a statement, on Sunday, in Lagos after Mr Kristof Waterschoot, Managing Director of APEC-Antwerp/Flanders Port Training Centre and Port of Antwerp International and Mr Mario Lievens, Director at Port of Antwerp International met with the Director-General, NIMASA, Dr Bashir Jamoh.

The NIMASA DG’s meeting with the executives was held at the Nigerian Belgian Chamber of Commerce, Onikan, Lagos where he disclosed that the Port of Antwerp expressed interest in the cooperation, training and improved relationship between both parties and also declared interests in Inland Ports, citing that Nigeria’s proposed National Maritime Transport Policy is being monitored by Belgian investors.

We believe in Nigeria and we observe that the business climate in Nigeria can be difficult, but there is hardly any country without its peculiar difficulties,” they said.

Reacting to the proposal Dr Jamoh said, ”One area I will like the Belgian private sector to come in is wreck removal and wreck recycling. There is a huge investment opportunity there, and there is also a big room for collaboration. This is more so as the Federal Government is planning a coordinated policy on wreck removal.”

Dr. Jamoh stated that Nigeria Maritime Transport Policy is part of a larger policy to purposed to build alternatives to oil. “The maritime sector is consciously being opened up for investment, by local and foreign investors to build a sustainable blue economy,” he added.

What you should know

  • The Port of Antwerp International is Europe’s second-largest port, which offers operations that strengthen ports and terminals through consultancy, management solutions, investment projects and training.
  • The FG  approved funding for the expanding of other ports away from Lagos as Nairametrics reported on December 2020 that the Akwa Ibom State Government disclosed the first of the $4.6 billion Ibom Deep Seaport  (IDSP) has been approved by the Federal Government. The first phase would cost $2.016 billion.
  • The Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed also stated that Nigeria’s focus on removing ease of doing business bottlenecks including port reforms would help Nigeria’s rating in the Global Corruption indices.

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Business

US Ambassador opens centre in Lagos, to boost entrepreneurial skills among Nigerian youth

US Ambassador to Nigeria has launched a centre where youths can gain entrepreneurship skills through programs and workshops.

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The United States Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Beth Leonard, opened the first-of-its-kind Window on America in Nigeria on Monday.

The Centre is expected to serve as a community center where young people develop their ideas, as well as their leadership and entrepreneurship skills through programs and workshops designed especially for them.

This was disclosed in a statement shared by Temitayo Famutimi, Information Specialist, Public Affairs Section (PAS), U.S. Consulate General and seen by Nairametrics.

According to the statement, the Centre, which was Hosted at the Lekki Slum2School Innovation Hub in Lagos, is as a result of a partnership between the US Consulate General, Lagos and Slum2School Africa, founded by Otto Orondaam, a 2016 alumnus of U.S. government’s Mandela Washington Fellowship.

The Ambassador noted that the new Window on America is open to everyone in the community, offering its services, programs and resources to the public at no cost.

She said, “We are happy to open the very first Window on America space in Nigeria here in Lekki.

“In the next few months, we will follow with six additional new Windows on America in the south and 12 across the country. We want our Windows on America to promote mutual understanding between the United States and the people of Nigeria.”

In addition to providing public programming space, the Lekki Window on America will support five core programs: English language learning, educational advising, alumni activities, cultural programs, and information about the U.S.

What you should know

  • Visitors to the window will typically include students, teachers, entrepreneurs, academics, journalists, civic organizations, government officials, and community leaders, in addition to many others.
  • Windows on America are American spaces that provide welcoming environments where visitors can learn about the United States, including its government, history, culture, and educational system through programs, lectures, books and electronic resources provided by the U.S. Government.
  • In addition to the Lekki Window on America, 12 more will be opened in major cities across the country, including Abeokuta, Awka, Benin City, Enugu, Osogbo, Uyo, Zaria, Minna, Dutse, Makurdi, Gombe and Lafia, in order to engage more Nigerian audiences in their local communities.

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Business

AfCFTA to reduce illegal gold mining in Nigeria – Minister of Mines

The Minister of Mines and Steel says that illegal gold mining would be stemmed by the implementation of AfCFTA.

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FG to launch policy to prevent smuggling of mineral resources

The Nigerian Government announced that the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) would help reduce illegal mining in the country and also standardize Mining practices in Nigeria.

This was disclosed by the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Mr Olamilekan Adegbite, at the NAN forum in Abuja on Sunday.

The Minister disclosed that the mining sector was ignored by the Federal Government after oil was discovered, which made it possible for artisanal miners to venture into the sector.

Right now, many Nigerians are into artisanal mining and this was caused by the fact that when oil was discovered, Nigeria moved away from mining, which was the mainstream of the economy.

Before oil and gas, Nigeria relied on coal and tin; we were exporting and were indeed, quoted on the London Metal Exchange.

“And that is basically what was giving Nigeria money in those days before oil came but when oil came, we moved away. We left mining behind,” he said.

READ: Aviation Minister orders airline operators to ensure rights of persons with disabilities

He added that the most mined commodity in Nigeria by artisanal miners is gold, which has created a lucrative black market for international buyers. He also said that with the AfCFTA, documentation of mining exports would be required, reducing illegal outflows.

Gold is the most traded mineral in Nigeria and these people mine gold and get nuggets. There are several thousands of such miners, when you aggregate what they mine, it comes in large volume and several kilos of gold,” he said.

To know the extent of the money they make in the gold business, they hire private jets to take them out illegally because they realise a lot of money.

“At the rate gold is selling, one ounce of gold is selling for $2,200 and by the time you carry a thousand kilogrammes, you are making several billions of naira.

But with AfCFTA coming into effect, we hope that other countries will cooperate with Nigeria because now it is a free trade but there is documentation,” he added.

READ: Gold prices suffer worst week in four months

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The Minister said that with AfCFTA going into effect, the FG hopes it will help stem the problem because Nigeria is  supposed to trade freely with Africa with documentation.

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We hope that other countries will cooperate with Nigeria. I will not allow such illegal activity to go on within those countries,” he said.

In case you missed it: Nairametrics also reported that the Mining Minister said a Nigerian-Canadian company, mining gold in Nigeria’s Osun State looks set to commence the exportation of gold in June this year.

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