CARGO facilitation at the ports is over $15billion yearly, Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) Managing Director Hadiza Bala-Usman has said.

She said 85 per cent of goods and services coming into the country use  seaports’facilities.

Speaking on the sidelines of the presentation of a book, titled: “Footprints of President Muhammadu Buhari in the Maritime Sector”, a compendium by the Shipping Correspondents Association of Nigeria (SCAN), Bala-Usman, represented by the Executive Director, Marine and Operation, NPA, Dr. Sekonte Davies, explained that President Muhammadu Buhari’s interest in turning around the sector should be applauded, especially when the contributions of maritime to the national economy is considered.

“The truth is that it would be impossible to speak about all the steps that have been taken to improve the maritime sector within the past three years. But even the few things that we have spoken about here would show that the administration is determined to change the maritime story forever. This is what guides the 25-reform plan that we are working with. And one is particularly happy at the level of synergy and cooperation between the agencies in the sector,” he said.

He said the administration has been deliberate about entrenching a culture of transparency and giving all stakeholders a sense of trust in the system which did not exist before in the industry. For instance, he revealed that one of the greatest things this administration has achieved is in the area of transparency. The NPA, he further said, in the spirit of transparency, has opened her budget to the public with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with BUDGIT’s Open Budget System Platform.

He said the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA)  also launched a massive rebranding strategy to rebuid confidence in its operartions.