Monday, 31 August 2015


The best-selling and most sought after online business news and articles publishers, Tectono Business Review, gathered that he National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) has started discussing with the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) on how to convey crude to the refineries via the waterways.

This development was made known by the Acting Managing Director of NIWA, Mr. Danladi Ibrahim, who told newsmen that formal discussions with the NNPC management on the proposal was slated to begin this week.

According to Mr. Danladi, NIWA is inspired to initiate the proposal in view of the determination to stop the delivery of crude by trucks to the refineries in Port Harcourt, Kaduna and Warri. He added that the NIWA could deliver crude through barges to the refineries and described the option as cheaper, safe and environment-friendly. He said that NIWA also had the capacity to deliver refined products through inland waterways to all states, except Katsina and Kano, stressing that the organisation had procured enough tugboats to drive the barges, which were of varying capacities from 300 to 800 tonnes.

Mr. Ibrahim said that NIWA had also acquired 17 gunboats to guarantee the security of the facilities and personnel involved in the operation and hoped that the proposal would be considered by the NNPC, saying the organisation had taken steps to protect the banks of River Niger. According to him, this is to prevent the dredged channel which was undertaken at a cost of N36 billion from being blocked.

He stated that Nigeria would reap the benefits of the dredging, saying more companies were ready to use barges to move their products. He suggested the establishment of an inland waterways trust fund. He said the fund would make it compulsory for stakeholders in the maritime sector to pay a certain percentage of their earnings for the development of inland waterways infrastructure.

According to the NIWA boss, his vision is to unlock the potential of the sector in line with efforts of the government to diversify the economy. He also spoke of plans to maintain waterways and develop the waterfront in Lagos, Port Harcourt, Asaba and Warri through a public-private partnership arrangement.