By Dirisu Yakubu
Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi has reiterated Nigeria’s readiness to go on with the Regional Maritime Development Bank Project provided two-third of member states accept the decision reached by the Maritime Organisation of West and Central Africa, MOWCA.
Amaechi disclosed this shortly after declaring open the meeting of MOWCA Committee of Experts on the Regional Maritime Development Bank Project and Interim Board of Directors on Tuesday in Lagos.
It would be recall that MOWCA member states having identified the major deficit in the development of indigenous participation in the regional maritime sector and associated value chain, had via a resolution at an annual general session, resolved to establish a maritime bank focused on the growth and development in West and Central Africa with a view to raising debt and equity capital of US$850,000,000.00 and US$150,000,000.00 respectively.
Consequently, the federal government through the Federal Ministry of Transportation was then mandated to take all necessary steps to bring the bank to actualization.
According to Amaechi, any decision reached at the end of the meeting will not be presented to President Muhammadu Buhari until other member states demonstrate their willingness and readiness to key into the project.
“Whatever decision we reach here is subject to approval and confirmation of every member states in writing. I will not convey whatever decision reached here to the President until I have the binding of two-third of the members organisation because if we take it to the President and the President approves and every other person backs out, are we going to establish a maritime bank of Nigeria? That is not the intention! The intention is to establish a maritime bank that cuts across West and Central Africa.
“Nigeria is going to sign for being part of that meeting and we are willing to make our contributions but we will not make those contributions until the two-third of the member states have accepted the decision and have agreed on a timeline which they will make their contributions. I’m willing to participate, we can’t have just six countries passing a law on behalf of over 20 countries in the region,” he said.
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