As the world seeks strategies for safer and more sustainable exploitation of maritime resources for transportation and other commercial purposes, the immediate past Director-general of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr. Dakuku Peterside has tasked developing countries on the development of what he called a “robust technology infrastructure” and leveraging smart applications for the enhancement of safety and growth in the sector.
He also solicited the support of the People’s Republic of China to ensure that this is attained in the shortest possible time.
A statement by his media office which was obtained by Maritime Bits revealed that Peterside stated this at Normal University, Beijing, China at a one-day international conference on the future of maritime industry in developing countries.
Speaking as an international maritime industry resource person, the former NIMASA helmsman said the maritime industry was a critical component of global trade and, therefore safety was of paramount importance to all stakeholders.
His words: “Embracing smart applications has emerged as a powerful strategy to bolster safety measures and efficiency in the industry. Whether for real time monitoring and data collection, predictive analytics, automation of navigation systems, collision avoidance systems, or emergency response and communication, smart applications represent a transformative approach to enhance safety standards in the industry.”
According to Peterside who was also the former Chairman of Association of African Maritime Administration (AAMA), more than any other region, the global south must step up its game in this regard to optimise benefit from the blue economy.
He enjoined developing countries to invest in the development of strong technological infrastructure and manpower in the maritime industry, saying it is critical for the growth of the sector.
“It is unfortunate that most developing countries are just contented using services in the sector without investing in tailor made technology solutions that address their peculiar challenges. Developing countries can leap frog growth in blue economy and maritime ecosystem by up scaling application of technology in the sector”, he added.
He praised China for its great accomplishments in the blue economy space, including having eight of the top 10 ports globally by volume and having the highest number of patent applications in maritime related technology.
The former legislator who was a member of the House of Representatives in the 7th Assembly enjoined China to support developing countries which, according to him, represent the market of today and the future, to grow for its progress to have real meaning and make global impact.
He stated that Nigeria, Africa’s biggest economy, had recently focused on the blue economy for economic renaissance, saying the country should be supported by all who wish Africa well.
Besides China, Peterside is also expected to speak at different maritime events taking place later this month in Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and United Kingdom.