The Nigerian Shippers Council (NSC) has stated that its additional role as Nigeria’s Port Economic Regulator would result in fair trading practices at the ports, among other benefits that would impact on the economy including promoting transparency, efficiency and reducing cost of doing business.
Ms Azuka Ogo, Director, Consumer Affairs Department at the Nigerian Shippers’ Council, said this at the town hall meeting with users and providers of shipping and ports services, held in Ibadan on Tuesday.
She stated that “with the added responsibility, the council shall create an effective regulatory system for all port activities to ensure standardization of services, tariffs, rates and charges that would protect every player’s rights and defend their interests for the realization of optimal benefits of the ports concession regime.”
It will be recalled that the Nigerian Shippers’ Council was appointed Port Economic Regulator by an executive order issued by former President Goodluck Jonathan in March this year to “institute an effective regulatory regime at Nigerian ports for enhanced efficiency, and address the negative impact of concession activities due to the absence of an economic regulator.”
Stakeholders at the meeting which included shipping associations from the Southwest states, the Chambers of Commerce and the road transport associations, highlighted issues bordering on resuscitation of dry ports, road rehabilitation for transporting goods from the ports, use of touts for cargo inspection and other sharp practices among agencies at the ports, among other issues, and requested the council’s intervention to ease their plight.
Chairman on the occasion, Prince Abimbola Makanjuola, noted that the council’s regulatory role mandated it to protect government and private sector interests through consultations with various stakeholders in the community.
“To achieve this council embarked on various sensitization programmes to enlighten the public on the legal framework put in place to solve the enormous challenges facing shippers in the past years,” Makanjuola said.
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