The Nigerian Chamber of Shipping (NCS) on Friday said that it would assist Nigerian shippers to access loans, to enable them to be able to remain in business.
The Acting Managing Director, NSC, Mr Burkola Lawal, said that with the low tonnage of imports as a result of forex scarcity, the chamber had to come in to provide a leeway for its stakeholders.
Lawal, whose organisation recently conducted a-3-day training for maritime professionals, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos that the loan would be on a one digit interest rate.
“The level of tonnage coming into our ports is decreasing from what it used to be before the fluctuation of the Dollar to the Naira.
“There is need for us to create a buffer sort of, to encourage our importers and shippers not to remain aloof, in spite of the global economic melt-down,” Lawal said.
He said that the chamber had concluded plans to partner foreign financial institutions to provide a kind of leverage, for the shippers to be able to access the loan with ease.
According to him, the chamber will be dealing with the shippers and the importers with bodies like the Manufacturers’ Association of Nigeria (MAN), as a surety to the loan.
NAN reports that the chamber took 12 of its trainees from the recent training on a tour of the facilities at the Apapa Port, for on the spot information on the workings of the port.
The participants, who were drawn from different walks of life, were taken to Energy Nature and Life (ENL) terminal and Greenview Development Nigeria Limited (GDNL).