Home NewsBusiness Rivers Entrepreneurs & Investors Forum Wants Tax Relief On Importation Of Ships And Reduction Of Duties For Indigenous Operators In The Maritime Sector

Rivers Entrepreneurs & Investors Forum Wants Tax Relief On Importation Of Ships And Reduction Of Duties For Indigenous Operators In The Maritime Sector

by Anita Ogona

Rivers Entrepreneurs and Investors Forum (REIF) Press Release on the Maritime Sector
After a successful webinar by the Rivers Entrepreneurs and Investor Forum (REIF) on the maritime sector, the following recommendations were made:
• There should be collaboration between the Central Bank of Nigeria, Ministry of Finance, Transport and Budget on the benefits of tax relief on importation of ships and reduction of duties for indigenous operators and an urgent bill put in place to ensure this.
• A PPP arrangement will help to improve the maritime sector and there should be no government interference. Government needs to support local investors. Government should encourage investment in ventures that will yield returns and bring about the much needed development with the private sector taking the lead.
• The policy makers need to work in harmony with industry professionals at all times. The Cabotage Vessel Finance Fund where ship owners contribute 2% into should be made available to support ship owner’s expansion.
• There should be a linkage between the seaports with new and old rail lines.
• Policy is a big problem in the maritime sector. There is a need to do a study to know how policy inconsistencies destroy the economy of the country.
• There is a need to develop capacity in the value chain in the maritime industry. This could have the potential of creating conservatively over 100,000 jobs.
• Our flagship sea ports in the country are collectively over 400 years old and a minimum of 100 years each namely APAPA, TIN CAN, Port Harcourt and ONNE sea ports. Every investment has its projected life span which is pro rated on a yearly basis. That’s the global best practice as such investment should have broken even multiple times over. Facilities that were built 100 years today should be updated or decommissioned for a new modern infrastructure to drive activities in the value chain. To this end we call on the federal government to promote an enabling environment for investment flow into the maritime eco space with focus on building new deep sea ports. Electronic callup systems currently put in place is a complete waste of time, as it will not solve the current congestion challenges in Apapa and Tin Can ports.
Signed
Ibifiri Bobmanuel
President, REIF

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