The Executive Secretary of Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC), Hassan Bello has stated that the transportation industry can contribute about 10 per cent to the Nigeria’s gross domestic products (GDP) if the right policies are in place to drive the sector.
To achieve this, he said there must be massive investment in infrastructure and training for operators and regulators on new global trends in transportation services.
Bello stated this over the weekend when he received officials of the Nigerian Institute of Transport Technology (NITT) led by its Director General, Dr. Aminu Yusuf, who paid him a courtesy visit in his office.
He stressed that as Nigeria looks to export to diversify its economy, transportation and shipping are the key, adding that there must be processes put in place to achieve this.
He said the NSC is knowledge- driven hence there is need for the maritime sector to be driven by personnel in specialised knowledge.
Bello said: “So many mistakes have been made in the industry as a result of the huge knowledge gap. We cannot afford to make any mistakes this time that we have limited opportunity in the sector. Transportation is a significant aspect of the Nigerian economy. The time has come for the sector to mean something and contributes a huge portion of the nation’s GDP.
“There is need for investment to get the sector to be properly linked to the Nigerian economy. The shippers council is interested in developing policies that is aimed at growing the transportation sector. There is a gap in the industry today. The industry is knowledge driven hence the need for training and retraining.”
The NSC boss restated the council’s determination to partner the NITT for effective training and capacity building development of personnel.
While noting that capacity building is instrumental to the development of the maritime sector, Bello stressed that there is need to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the agency and the institution.
Bello commended the effort made so far by the institute on training stating that it has trained a large number of professionals in the transport sub sector of the economy.
He urged the institute to put in place awareness campaign programme to move the training outfit forward.
“The two institutions are knowledge driven, what we do is to get the required knowledge because it is the knowledge that drive the industry and so many mistakes has been made due to lack of knowledge and Nigeria will suffer for it”
“But now the choices we have for the industry are limited and we cannot afford to make such mistakes and therefore we have to patronise this fountain of knowledge called NITT,” he stressed.
Bello described the NITT programmes as innovative and modern saying that transport is a significant component to Nigeria economy.
On his part, the Director General, NIIT, Dr. Aminu Yusuf said the NITT has been able to put in place measures to pursue transport education development programme to set agenda for the overall development of the sector.
He, however, appealed to the NSC’s boss to look into the possibility of investing in the infrastructural development of the institute and jointly carry out research projects on transport and logistics.
Furthermore, he said the NIIT cannot improve on its own without the patronage of government agencies like the NSC adding that the NSC as an economic regulator must ensure that the right things are put in place to transform the transportation sector.
“We have also submitted proposal for a joint two day workshop with the NSC on the role of transport and logistics in international trade in Nigeria and this is in addition to the training proposal sent to your office for consideration”, he added.