The N50 billion floating dock acquired by the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) is to become operational in the first quarter of 2022 on Public Private Partnership (PPP) basis. The officials of the Agency have traveled to Dubai to inspect the facilities of the managing partner. Director-General of the Agency, Dr Bashir Jamoh, while showcasing NIMASA’s achievements in 2021, said that the dock would not be solely operated by government or the Agency. The floating dry dock named “MFDP NIMASA” was constructed in 2016 by Damen Shipyard and is one out of the five types of dry docks used for ship repairs.
It is a submersible platform specifically designed and used to repair vessels. Jamoh stressed that the agency had been given the go ahead by the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) to continue with the privatisation, saying that NIMASA had gone ahead to negotiate with the managing partner and the co-partner, Nigerian Ports Authority, that would give the Agency continental shipyard for the floating dock. The NIMASA DG noted that the management had invited foreigners that would check to see the dock was still in sound shape, the necessary services to be done, the parts and the class conditions to be taken care of.
He said: “The dock will not be solely operated by government or NIMASA. We have handed it for public private partnership. “As usual, the issue of privatisation of any government property goes through processes and the floating dock is undergoing those processes. The Director General of ICRC was here to give us the first certificate, telling us that privatising the modular floating dock is bankable, achievable and profitable. “As I am talking today, officials of this administration are in Dubai to inspect the facilities of the managing partner and we expect in no distant future, maximum by middle of February, we should be able to get the final no objection. Privatisation of government property must be approved by the Federal Executive Council because it is a national asset.
“We still believe we can take it to the final destination and the cost implication cannot be borne by the federal government alone. When we privatise it, the managing partner can decide and move it to the proper position it is supposed to be.” The director general added that the current management inherited the dock, saying that they came in with no plan of where to install it.
Jamoh explained that when the Agency wanted to channel it for use, they had a lot of challenges, explaining that the operation of the floating dock was not a product that one could just walk up and pick like a car key. The director-general said that the plan was to ascertain the true situation, so that when approval was gotten from the executive council, it would be in good shape and be moved to where it would be used.
According to him, “the floating dock is a policy intervention, a huge investment by government, there is nothing lost here, the best thing is how to manage the investment to yield revenue and provide job opportunities for Nigerians. “We have so many countries coming to Nigeria with their vessels and they prefer to go to another country like Togo and Ghana to repair their ships. We need these things to be done here and this will give us jobs and others.”