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Preparation for Nigeria’s maritime exposition (NIMAREX) 2014 has started with the inauguration of the planning committee.
The annual exposition, which is in the fourth edition, holds March 10 – 12, 2014 at Eko Hotels and Suites, Lagos.
National Chairman, Nigeria Shipowners Association (NISA), Chief Isaac Jolapamo, inaugurated the committee recently in Lagos.
The NIMAREX 2014 Planning Committee has as Chairman, Mrs. Margaret Onyema-Orakwusi, who will be assisted by Mr. Ayo Adedoyin, while Mr. Bolaji Akinola will serve as Secretary.
Speaking at the inauguration event, Jolapamo lamented that Nigeria has not been able to compete favourably with her peers.
“These countries have excelled, not because they are better than us, but because of their respective government’s support and encouragement,” he said.
Continuing, Jolapamo who is also the Managing Director and CEO of Morlap Shipping Group, said: “I have said it over and over again that the maritime industry in Nigeria, if properly harnessed, can become the largest employer of labour, as well as the second highest revenue generating sector after oil and gas, but our maritime potential remained largely untapped."
He explained that the idea of NIMAREX, as with any other maritime expo worldwide, is to bring together everyone involved in ships from construction to scrapping and that NIMAREX has since inception grown from strength to strength over the years to achieve this objective.
The fourth edition is projected to be bigger, with the prospects of United States of America (USA) businessmen and women participating.Already, the Nigerian Navy (NN) has promised to make its debut as an exhibitor at the annual event.
According to the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Dele Joseph Ezeoba, who was represented at the inauguration ceremony by Rear Admiral Ferguson Bobai, the NN would book a stand at NIMAREX 2014 to showcase the products and services of the Nigerian Naval Dockyard (NND), including Nigeria’s first home-made warship.
The Navy chief explained that that vessel had been subjected and scored highly in hardy sea trials, noting that a bigger warship was currently under construction at the NND.
Ezeoba said that the Navy would be making a big showing at NIMAREX 2014, considering its very successful hosting of the Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV) meet earlier this year in Lagos.
Ezeoba assured the NIMAREX 2014 Planning Committee of NN support towards a successful outing, noting that representatives of the NN in the committee, Bobai and Commodore Marcus Odey, had both served on the organising committee of the OPV meet in Lagos.
Chairman, NIMAREX 2014 Planning Committee, Onyema-Orakwusi, charged members of the committee to give their best towards a remarkable outing for NIMAREX 2014.
“The Committee is going to showcase the industry, deliver NIMAREX in a manner that will shake the world, she said.
Members of the committee are drawn from, among others, the Federal Ministry of Transport, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), NSC, NN, NISA, National Inland Waterways Aiuthority (NIWA), Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Lagos State Ministry of Transportation, Lagos State Transport Management Authority (LASTMA), Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), Nigerian Maritime Law Association (NMLA), Skye Bank, and Fidelity Bank Plc.