The newly appointed Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Adegboyega Oyetola, has assumed office with a pledge to build responsible management that will ensure efficient utilisation of the nation’s marine resources.
Oyetola, who made this known on his assumption of duty at the ministry in Abuja, expressed happiness at the honour accorded by Mr President to champion and chart a course for the growth of marine resources, urging the management team to support him in delivering on his ministerial mandate.
Oyetola observed that, regarding the size of Nigeria’s blue economy, it cannot but be a significant player in the sector, which is estimated to be worth about $3 trillion globally.
Furthermore, he said the blue economy has the capacity to contribute immensely to revenue generation and provide jobs for the unemployed, hence the need to properly harness it.
Speaking on fostering and facilitating trade by making inland waterways navigable, Oyetola said: “We must come up with practicable ways of ensuring that our inland rivers and waterways are properly 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 waterways so as to make them navigable for the passage of goods and people.”
In her welcome speech, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Marine and Blue Economy, Dr Magdalene Ajani, promised a smooth working relationship with the minister, stating that together they can move the marine and blue economy forward and make it more impactful to the economy of Nigeria.
Speaking on efforts made thus far, the Permanent Secretary stated: “We have done a bit in terms of the blue economy in the country before now. There is a committee that is being chaired by the former Vice President working on the blue economy, and there is an expanded committee that brings in everyone that is within the waters, so now that we have a stand-alone ministry, we hope and desire that it will impact a lot on the economy of the country and move our nation forward.”