In compliance with the Presidential directive on the resumption of 24-hour port operations in Lagos ports, the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) announced it has begun analysing Cargo Manifests and issuing Debit Notes to Shipping Agents within 24 hours of submission.
In a statement in Lagos, NIMASA said Shipping Agents could henceforth access the Agency at those times with their manifests for necessary action after which a Debit Note will be issued to them not later than 24 hours after submission.
The Director General of the Agency, Dr. Dakuku Peterside , in the statement said the change is expected to impact the overall performance of ports operations by reducing the dwell time of vessels calling the Lagos ports while increasing efficiency of the entire system.
He added that: “The Executive Order signed by the Acting President for resumption of 24 hour port operations is aimed at improving efficiency and facilitating trade in Lagos Ports. As a responsible Agency, we are committed to implementing this directive and if it means extending work hours or even instituting a shift system, we will.”
The DG stated that the new approach to analysing manifests and issuing Debit Notes will be constantly monitored and evaluated to ensure its effectiveness adding that the automation of the entire process is receiving priority attention.
He also disclosed that the pilot programme which the Agency launched on the new process reduced dwell time of vessels at the ports considerably, adding that efforts are ongoing to ensure the process the automated.
“The Agency is also expediting action on automating its processes to allow for electronic submission of manifests, issuing of debit Notes and Sailing Clearances which will further reduce human interaction, improve efficiency and block revenue leakages”, Peterside stated.
It would be recalled that the Acting President Professor Yemi Osinbajo had in May this year signed three Executive Orders as part of the Federal Government initiative under the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council (PEBEC) to ensure ease of doing business in the country, one of which was the resumption of 24 hour port operations in Lagos Port.