The Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas Limited (NLNG) and the Nigerian Ports Authority have agreed on a partnership geared towards the deployment of a Vessel Tracking Service (VTS).
This commitment was made, on Wednesday, when the Managing Director of the NLNG, Dr. Phillip Mshelbila, paid a partnership renewal visit to the NPA Headquarters in Lagos.
The VTS which is to be deployed through the NLNG Ship Management Limited (NSML), a subsidiary of the NLNG, will enhance the capacity of the NPA in the area of domain awareness and management.
Speaking on the development, the Managing Director of the NPA, Mohammed Bello-Koko, said, “we are greatly delighted by this development especially as it is coming at a time when we are ramping up efforts under the technical guidance of the IMO to deploy the Port Community System (PCS) since the effective safety communication with vessel-to-shore and vessel-to-vessel that a VTS enables actually supports the successful deployment of PCS.”
Vessel Traffic Service is a control measure for vessels required to assure the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS); an International Maritime Organization (IMO)Convention which provides safety assurance for the ship, crew, cargo, the environment and ports host community.
This synergy between NPA as a port regulator and trade facilitation platform and the NLNG a major player in the global Liquiefied Natural Gas business signposts a lot of positives for the renewed export orientation of the Federal Government of Nigeria with the NPA at its vanguard.
Meanwhile, the Nigerian Marítime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), has urged the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) to consider flying Nigerian flags on its vessels.The NIMASA DG, Bashir Jamoh said this when he received the management of the NLNG led by its Managing Director, Philip Mshelbila in Lagos.
Bashir Jamoh also noted that a better working relationship between NIMASA and the NLNG would greatly enhance operations in the maritime sector of the country.
He assured the NLNG management that NIMASA would extend the already existing working relationship the Agency has with the NLNG Ship Management Limited (NSML) to the parent body, while also urging NLNG to consider the Nigerian Flag as first option for her vessels.
NIMASA needs the NLNG, we desire to have Vessels of the NLNG fly the Nigerian Flag, just imagine that Vessels of the NLNG are on the Nigerian Registry, our tonnage will increase exponentially, the Nigerian Flag will earn much more respect globally and we will get better recognition,” he said.
On his part, the managing director of NLNG, Dr Philip Mshelbila noted that the management of the NLNG is committed to the deliberate indigenization of the human component of its operation adding that they are ready to partner NIMASA to enhance safety and security of lives and assets in the Nigerian maritime domain. He noted that they are on the same page with NIMASA in terms of capacity development and the quest to ensure Nigeria attains internationally acceptable standards in her operations in the maritime sector.
“We at NLNG have realized that for us to fulfill one of our key vision elements, which is helping to build a better Nigeria, it is important for us to work with all our stakeholders including NIMASA. We are aware that NIMASA and our subsidiary, NMSL are working hand in hand for the progress of this country and we desire that same spirit of partnership and collaboration should be extended to the NLNG.”
“I believe that for NLNG to fulfill its mission as a business it needs to partner with NIMASA. NIMASA is an important stakeholder for us; we don’t just see it as a regulator only. I know we have various training programs, working closely with NIMASA, being explored by NMSL to provide sea time training for Seafarers, which has enabled the seafarer to fulfill their qualifications and get certifications.”
He expressed appreciation to NIMASA for the active management of the activities in the Gulf of Guinea. “We can certainly testify from the report that we get both locally and from international bodies that there has been a huge success in the war against criminal activities in the Gulf of Guinea and we know that the Deep Blue Project is instrumental in attaining this success.”