Home News Association Tasks FG, LASG On Building Boats Locally To Discourage Capital Flight

Association Tasks FG, LASG On Building Boats Locally To Discourage Capital Flight


By Idris Olukoya

Lagos  –   The Federal and Lagos State Governments should start manufacturing boats that would meet international standards to provide job opportunities to many unemployed and reduce capital flights from the country.

Mr Ilori Akingbulu, the Chairman of the Association of Tourist Boat Operators and Water Transporters of Nigeria (ATBOWATN), Lagos State Chapter, said these in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.

Akingbulu also said that this would improve water transportation in the country and contribute to the economic diversification of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration.

Akingbulu said that it was disheartening that Lagos State and Nigeria do not have a factory for boat-making.

“By now; Lagos State, being the commercial hub of West Africa, is supposed to have several boat building companies.

“Boat operators go the extra miles to build boats for water transportation. Achieving this is not easy because of the high exchange rate of foreign currencies needed by operators for imported materials.

“The government should discourage importation of boats, ferries from overseas but encourage locally made ones,’’ he said.

He said that government should grant incentives in form of loans

Akingbulu said that government should grant incentives such as soft loans, creating boat manufacturing companies, assemble plants to local builders and operators.

Also government should create enabling environments for boat builders and operators to produce standard boats that could compete favourably with imported ones and make the industry to thrive, he said.

He said that the industry had capable and experienced hands who could build boats that would complete with imported ones.

Some of our boat builders have been in this business for close to 30 years, Akingbulu said.

“However, lack of incentives from governments has affected the improvement that the sector needs to manufacture standard boats.

“If government can support the operators diligently, it will help the growth of the industry,’’ he said.

He said that the water transportation sub-sector was capable of generating huge revenue for the government and creating thousands of employment opportunities for people.

Akingbulu also advised the governments to preserve the heritage on the waterways for tourists and research purposes.

“There are many potentialities and investment opportunities on the waterways; if they are well utilized, governments can earn billions of naira from them,’’ he said.

He also advised governments to erect security posts along the coastal areas to combat sea pirates.

Akingbulu said that there should also be the Private, Public Partnership (PPP) arrangements between the state governments and the private boat operators.

“Lagos State Government needs to strengthen its relationship with operators in the water transportation sector for its development.

“We want the Lagos State Government to carry the association along in their decision making,’’ he said.

Akingbulu said that the operators were suffering from multiple taxation and this was affecting the growth of the industry.

He alleged that operators were paying various taxes to both state and federal agencies as wellas local governments adding that these  should not be the case.

Akingbulu appealed to the government to specify whom boat operators should pay taxes to in other to avoid multiple taxation.

Previous articleIn Defence Of Titilayo Momoh
Next articleArmy Denies killing 8 Armed Youths In Cross River

Leave a Reply