Former Secretary General, Abuja MoU and Chairperson, Nigeria International Maritime Summit (NIMS), Mrs. Mfon Ekong Usoro presenting her welcome address at the just concluded NIMS in Lagos ...recently

NIMS 2022 summit with the theme “Igniting the Blue Economy” that is laser-focused on greenhouse gas emissions and decarbonization in shipping is holding at the most auspicious time. A time when global attention is concentrated on the preservation of our planet and all its life forms through the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions including from ships particularly ships engaged international voyages as evidenced in the just concluded COP 27 hosted by Egypt. The Nigerian International Maritime Summit has progressively established itself as THE FORUM where maritime and related industries comprising of the public and the private sectors converge to engage brilliant minds on issues of global importance, touching on burning concerns outside the confines of domestic or regional interests. Last year, the Summit was keynoted by Her Excellency, Dr. Amani Abou-Zeid, the Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy, African Union Commission with participants at the high-Level panel discussions from South Africa and the United States. At this year’s Summit, we have speakers from across Africa and Europe including Ghana, Kenya, Tunisia and the United Kingdom and many more participating virtually.

L-R: The Secretary General of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), Mr. Kitack Lim having a tete-a-tete with the Chairperson, Nigeria International Maritime Summit (NIMS), Mrs. Mfon Ekong Usoro at a dinner to herald the NIMS in Lagos…recently.

The Nigerian International Maritime Summit is a coalition of the organised Nigerian maritime private sector under a broad-based industry governing board and advisory council constituted by stakeholders in ship operations, ports management, insurance, finance and professional services. This year’s Summit witnesses the innovative collaboration between the Federal Ministry of Transportation, Nigeria and its Agencies with NIMS, a partnership that has developed into a desirable collaboration to further the interrogation of identified development needs and challenges of the Nigerian and wider African maritime industry in the context of regional strategies and international commitments without jeopardizing the independence of thoughts and honest engagements on issues. What you see today is the result of the excellent collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Transportation and we appreciate the Honourable Minister and the Permanent Secretary for their respective roles in making this happen. Same appreciation goes to the Agencies in particular the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency and the Nigerian Ports Authority for cooperating with the Ministry in this collaborative endeavour.

Today epitomizes the saying “Nothing ventured, nothing gained”. We ventured and succeeded to bring the “Numero Uno” of the maritime world to keynote the Summit. Apart from the keynote address, the Summit offers a rich menu that covers decarbonization in shipping and greenhouse gas emissions, the available alternatives during the maritime transition period to zero-sulphur fuel, harnessing the wealth of the waters and financing maritime assets; and a first-hand feedback on the implementation status and challenges around the implementation of the IMO Res. A1147 (31) on gender equality, and a barrier-free working environment for women in the maritime community. This Summit will demonstrate Nigeria’s capacity as a regional maritime superpower that is conscious of its domestic, regional and international responsibilities. It will showcase the intellectual resource Nigeria is blessed with.

Finally, it is with great pleasure, first, on a personal level and as the Chair of NIMS, speaking on behalf of the Governing Board of NIMS that I welcome you, Y.E. Mr Kitack Lim, your delegation from the IMO and all our distinguished delegates to this Summit. Please find time to enjoy the sights and sounds of Lagos, the Centre of Excellence.

I thank you.

*Being excerpts of the welcome address presented by the Chairperson, Nigeria International Maritime Summit (NIMS), Mrs. Mfon Ekong Usoro at the opening of the NIMS in Lagos. The two day summit which took place at Oriental Hotel, Lagos was organized by the Federal Ministry of Transportation in collaboration with the Nigeria International Maritime Summit and Symposia with the theme “Igniting the Blue Economy”


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