NIMASA Secures Approval For Disbursement Of CVFF

Bashir Jamoh
Bashir Jamoh

The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency  says it has finally secured approval for the disbursement of the controversial Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund, CVFF.  Director General of the Agency,  Dr Bashir Jamoh  who broke the good news at a meeting with Shipowners in Lagos  said modalities for the disbursement  were being worked out.

The Director-General while describing shippers as “the beacon and hub of any developing economy,” said, “The journey to success for the current management of NIMASA depends on the shipowners. We shall continue to pursue our functions of promoting and regulating shipping in collaboration with shipowners and all relevant stakeholders.”

Reacting to shipowners’ concerns about the CVFF, Jamoh explained that the Minister of Transportation, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Amaechi, had approved the disbursement of the fund, meant to assist operators in the acquisition of maritime assets.

‘Only the details are being discussed with a view to avoiding past  mistakes and ensuring effective and efficient utilisation of the fund,” the Director-General stated.

‘“We have also submitted proposals to the Minister to seek fiscal and monetary incentives for our shipowners” adding that the final details of the CVFF were being worked out before commencement of pay-out after about 13 years

Dr Jamoh also announced that the December  2020 deadline for Single-hull Tanker Ban would not be extended.

The Agency, Dr Jamoh said,  remains steadfast in its decision to stop the use of single-hull tankers by December 31 this year.

Jamoh said, “We are committed to the complete phase-out of single-hull tankers by December 31. Operators still using this type of tanker should make adequate preparation to comply because there will be no going back on this decision.

“We have discussed the timeline for discontinuing the use of single-hull tankers and were given five years to comply with the ban, which, to all intents and purposes was  a generous allowance.

NIMASA had in 2015 revised the timetable for the phase-out of single-hull tankers operating in Nigeria. This followed the decision of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) to extend its deadline for ban on single-hull tankers for certain categories of tankers not engaged in international trade. NIMASA utilised the IMO extension window to shift the final phase-out date for single-hull oil tankers to December 31, 2020.

IMO’s Revised Regulation of Annex 1 to the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL) required flag administrations to phase out Category 2 and 3 single-hull tankers by 2015. But it extended the deadline for some tankers not engaged in international trade owing to the difficulty in achieving wholesale fleet replacement.