The Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Adegboyega Oyetola, has vowed to ensure the responsible management and utilisation of the country’s marine resources to boast its economy.
Addressing staff of the Ministry and journalists after resuming as Minister, the former governor of Osun State acknowledged the abundance of marine resources that exist within the coastal region and said there was the need to fully harness them for economic gains.
The minister further stated that part of his vision was to ensure that inland rivers, lakes and waterways were well utilised, both in terms of cargo shipment and passenger transportation.
He called for collaboration and teamwork among all stakeholders and agencies, adding that teamwork would help maximise the benefits of Nigeria’s vast coastal resources.
He said: “the global level Blue Economy is estimated at more than 1.5 trillion dollars annually, and I urge stakeholders to seize the opportunity and become a significant player in the industry.
“I strongly believe in the power of collaboration, and dedication to service. The collaborative effort of a group to achieve a common goal can only be efficient and effective through team work. This is why I crave your indulgence that we must work as a team to deliver on our mandate. Let us work together to find innovative solutions to the challenges we face, ensuring that our oceans and marine life are safe, reliable, and sustainable.
“Our oceans cover more than two-thirds of our planet’s surface, holding the key to sustainable economic growth, environmental preservation, and technological innovation. As we look ahead, my vision is rooted in the responsible management and utilisation of our marine resources to benefit not only our economy but also the health of our planet.
“We must come up with practicable ways of ensuring that our inland rivers, lakes, and waterways are well utilised, both in terms of cargo shipment and passenger transportation. And this can be done by embarking on a holistic dredging campaign for most of our strategically important inland waterways so as to make them navigable for the passage of goods and people.
“We equally have a duty to promote better inter-agency cooperation and coordination between the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, the Nigerian Ports Authority and the Nigerian Inland Waterways Authority.
“We must seize this opportunity to create positive change, leaving a lasting legacy for generations to come. I appreciate your dedication, and I look forward to working alongside each of you in the pursuit of a better Nigeria,” Oyetola stated.
Also speaking, the permanent secretary, Ministry of Transportation, Dr. Magdalene Ajani, who received the Minister, said there were a lot of untapped resources in the marine sector and pledged to support the vision of the new minister.