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Nigeria plans to set up international maritime arbitration centre

Nigeria plans to set up an international maritime arbitration centre and is seeking investors for shipbuilding and ship repair yards.

Director-General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA),  Dakuku Peterside, told the West African Shipping Summit in London last week that it plans to establish an International Maritime Arbitration Centre in Lagos. The aim of the centre would be to facilitate resolutions of disputes in the Gulf of Guinea to reduce the trend of disputes in the region being settled in London, Singapore and Dubai.

The concept would appear to follow the model of Singapore and Dubai with the Singapore Chamber of Maritime Arbitration (SCMA) and the Emirates Maritime Arbitration Centre (EMAC), respectively.

Dakuku also highlighted opportunities in the shipyard sector in Nigeria with the country’s cabotage laws set enforce the use of locally built vessels in the cabotage trades in coming years.

“In the next five years, vessels built outside Nigeria will not be allowed to participate in Cabotage trade. So you are all invited to come and invest in the shipbuilding and ship repair industry in Nigeria,” he said.

“With a population of about 200 million, which represents over half of the entire population of West Africa, potentials in shipbuilding and ship repair are available.”