The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) has announced the electronic verification of its new ship registration certificates introduced on July 1.
The new ship registry certificates, the agency said in a press statement on Sunday, now have QR Codes embedded in them to enable shipowners and other stakeholders verify the validity of the certificates.
The agency said it has also commenced enforcement of full compliance with the marine environment protection statutory requirements and documentation on Nigerian and foreign flagged vessels operating within the country’s maritime domain.
“All shipowners and operators are now required by law to update their vessel documentations, which include all permits or exemptions, levies, record books and plan approvals. This is also a pre-condition for further processing of any vessel or company requests with the agency.
“NIMASA would mete out sanctions to operators who fail to comply with the relevant requirements. The new move is pursuant to the agency’s statutory mandate to implement all provisions applicable to marine environment protection and documentation as enshrined in the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL), 1973; the Merchant Shipping Act, 2007; and the NIMASA Act 2007,” the statement issued by NIMASA spokesman, Osagie Edward, said.
NIMASA Director General, Dr. Bashir Jamoh, said effective application of environmental protection regulations in the maritime domain was crucial to the country’s quest for economic development.
Jamoh said the agency’s interest in bringing relevant stakeholders on board to facilitate a sound and seamless certification and marine environment protection regime.
“We are deliberate, methodical, and strategic in the enforcement of the environmental protection requirements as they relate to our own laws and international regulations that we accede to.
“A well protected marine environment guarantees investors’ confidence, which is a basic necessity for the maximisation and optimisation of our rich maritime endowments. This touches directly on the country’s economic diversification and sustainable development drive.”