NIMASA begins electronic verification of new Ship Registry Certificates

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  • Sets for full Enforcement of Marine Environment Protection Regulations

The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), has announced the electronic verification of new Ship Registry Certificates, introduced on July 1, 2021, by the agency. The new Ship Registry Certificates now have QR Codes (Quick Response Codes), embedded in them to enable Ship-owners, Stakeholders and Regulatory Agency Enforcement officers verify the validity of the certificates.

The Assistant Director, Public Relations Unit of NIMASA, Mr. Osagie Edward, made this known to reporters through a press statement.

According to the statement, “NIMASA has also commenced enforcement of full compliance with the marine environment protection statutory requirements and documentation on Nigerian, as well as foreign flagged vessels operating within the country’s maritime domain.

“All ship-owners 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 International Convention, for Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL), 1973; the Merchant Shipping Act, 2007; and NIMASA Act 2007.”

In the same vein, Director General of NIMASA, Dr. Bashir Jamoh, said effective application of environmental protection regulations in the maritime domain is crucial to the country’s quest for economic development.

Dr. Jamoh stressed the Agency’s interest in bringing relevant stakeholders on board to facilitate sound, seamless certification and marine environment protection regime.

He stated, “We are deliberate, methodical, and strategic in 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 basic necessity for maximisation and optimisation of our rich maritime endowments. This touches directly on the country’s economic diversification and sustainable development drive.”

He added, “We are enthroning sound and sustainable marine environment protection system to serve the interests of both the country and operators. And necessary steps have been taken to ensure we have stakeholders on the same page.”

On electronic verification of certificates, Dr. Jamoh informed, “The Agency has adopted technology to guarantee more security for our documents, to give stakeholders and international shipping community greater confidence in our services.”

Also, the Registrar of Ships, Mrs Nneka Obiayor, said security and business facilitation are important considerations in introduction of electronic verification of new Ship Registry Certificates.

According to Obiayor, “Safety and security of ships, as well as ease of doing business are of uppermost priority in the design and implementation of electronic verification of our newly-introduced Ship Registry Certificates.

“With a blend of technology and creativity, we have introduced new features intended to make our ship registration certificates more secure and easier to process.”

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