The Federal Government of Nigeria acting through the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) has signed a concession agreement with XPO Marine Services Limited to provide Offshore Waste Reception Facility (OWRF) in the country’s Eastern Zone.
According to a statement on Monday, Dr Bashir Jamoh, Director General NIMASA signed on behalf of the regulatory agency, while Wellington Agharese signed for XPO marine . The agreement signing ceremony took place at the Federal Ministry of Transport , Abuja.
The concession agreement seeks to fulfill International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships – MARPOL 73/78, and Nigeria’s Laws providing for the operation of Ship Generated Marine Waste Reception Facilities, which requires the provision of waste reception facilities to cater for waste and pollutants generated at sea.
The International Maritime Organization (IMO) has recognized that provision of waste reception facilities is crucial for effective MARPOL implementation, and the IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee has strongly encouraged Member States, particularly those parties to MARPOL as Port States, which includes Nigeria, to fulfill their treaty obligations on providing adequate waste reception facilities.
The importance of adequate waste reception facilities in the chain of implementation of MARPOL and MARPOL’s policy of “zero tolerance of illegal discharges from ships” could only be effectively enforced when there are adequate facilities.
The Managing Director of XPO Marine Services, Wellington Agharese expressed its capability and excitement to take on the huge responsibility attendant with the OWRF Project, stating its commitment to ensure the project is a success.
The OWRF will utilize the Design, Finance, Build, Operate, Maintain and Transfer (DFBOMT) PPP strategy for the project, which will ensure that from inception government funds are not utilized in project operations whilst the federal government partakes in revenue sharing.
Additionally, while the federal government seeks to meet its obligation of compliance to MARPOL, it will also be creating employment opportunities and positive external economic activities; and at the expiration of the concession period, the assets and equipment of the facility will revert to the federal government of Nigeria.
The Benefits of the OWRF Project include pollution elimination in Nigeria’s waters, infrastructure stock increase, revenue generation, transfer of assets at end of concession period to the FGN, employment opportunities and improved economic activities.
XPO Marine Services Ltd. has been a key player in Nigeria’s marine industry for over a decade and has demonstrated sufficient capability to contribute immensely to the country’s economic development.