…As Association wants FG to grant soft loans to boost investments***
Dr Maikanti Baru, the Group Managing Director of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), has directed partners involved in the Direct Sale Direct Purchase (DSDP) scheme of the corporation to patronise NIDAS, the NNPC’s shipping subsidiary.
DSDP is a scheme by which NNPC sells crude oil directly to off-shore refiners and receive products from them in return.
Baru disclosed this in a statement issued by the Corporation’s spokesman, Mr Ndu Ughamadu, in Abuja, on Thursday.
He said that the patronage would ensure sustained profitability of the shipping Subsidiary.
He gave the directive to two of NNPC’s relevant subsidiaries: Crude Oil Marketing Division (COMD) and the NNPC Trading Ltd, during his visit to the agency’s office in Hammersmith, London.
He commended the staff of the subsidiaries and expressed joy on the giant profitability strides recorded by NNPC/NIDAS no sooner than it launched into international freight business.
“I wish to commend NIDAS for beginning to make money for the NNPC. I am particularly elated with the company’s performance which has seen it doing 15 voyages on clean petroleum products from October 2018, just four months after it resumed international freight business,” he said
He urged the company to redouble efforts toward sustaining the current tempo which was in line with the profitability drive of the corporation.
In his remarks, the NIDAS Ltd Managing Director, Mr Lawal Sade, commended Baru for his support and efforts in revamping the company which had been moribund.
“Our recent modest successes wouldn’t have been possible without Baru’s support.
“We are truly inspired by this visit and we are ever ready to achieve the targets set for us by the NNPC Management,” he added.
Sade added that the company would work harder to sustain the tempo by engaging and soliciting the support of sister NNPC outfits and international partners toward improving the corporation’s bottom-line.
He informed the GMD that NIDAS had already signed Contract of Affreightment (COA) with BP and Socar for their DSDP clean cargoes, while discussions with Vitol, Mercuria and Petrocam were on-going.
Established in 2007, NNPC/NIDAS is a fully-owned subsidiary of NNPC charged with the mandate of shipping clean petroleum products into Nigeria and West Africa
Mr Joseph Okeke, President, Agricultural Traders Welfare Association (ATWA), in Abuja on Thursday called on the Federal Government to grant soft loans to enable Nigerians to invest in the agricultural sector.
Okeke made the appeal during the inauguration of the Implementation Committee of the Partnership Venture between the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment and ATWA in the Establishment of Agricultural Produce International Markets.
He said that granting of soft loans should be part of the incentives to encourage more investors beside government’s efforts to create a better environment for importers and exporters,
Okeke said that the association had conducted a study of various agricultural belts of the six zones and all the states which had enabled the members to identify crops, animals and farm produce that had comparative advantage in each location.
“It is our plan to construct specialised markets based on the storage, preservation, centrality, accessibility and security of such goods in terms of handling logistics for local and export purposes,” he said.
Okeke urged the government to provide a favourable environment that would encourage local and foreign investors to move into the project.
He said that in order to motivate more participants into the project, the association was granting free registration package to Nigerians between March 7 and Sept. 6.
He said that the project implementation committee would ensure that best technologies and healthy preservation procedures were employed.
Okeke said that the association would liaise with relevant agencies to come up with international packaging and preservation standards to make Nigerian products acceptable in the global market.
He called on the government to facilitate bilateral and multilateral trade relationships.
Okeke said that with proper polices, the country would be able to tackle the challenges of poor market development in onshore and offshore potential for agricultural produce.
He said that developing specialised markets would help to engender preservation, consolidation, packaging and market visibility.
The Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Mr Edet Akpan, said that the partnership was a reflection of the policy thrust of the government to promote and develop the non-oil sector of the economy.
Akpan was represented by Mr Haruna Mohammed, Director, Human Resources Management Department in the ministry.
The permanent Secretary said that the partnership would bring about market access for specialised goods and commodities, add value and employment.
Others are localised benefits, preservation facilities, competitiveness and standard, wealth generation and export drive.
He said that government would provide an enabling environment for the smooth take-off and operations for the markets.