The Executive Secretary, NIgerian Shippers’ Council Hassan Bello, yesterday said Nigeria is set to ratify the Rotterdam Rules, adding that for Nigeria to play its leading role in maritime activities, it has to ratify the convention.
Speaking at a validation colloquium on the United Nations Convention on contract on global shipping, in Abuja, Bello said: “One of the benefits in the adoption is that it will take care of our inland shippers and inland infrastructure like dry ports which comes under this very important convention.
“If we Nigeria as importing nation suffer loss or damage, we will have more compensation from this regime.
He admitted that Nigeria has always been part of international convention, stressing that though the Rotterdam rules has not come into force in the country, Nigeria remains a signatory to the convention that was concluded in Netherlands.
He said: “Only Togo, Democratic Republic of Congo and Spain have ratified it. We are expecting ratification from the U.S, other European and African countries and of course Nigeria is leading in Africa.
“Nigeria negotiated this convention, it was leading the other African countries in the negotiation, so the process of ratification will be set in motion by the Ministry of Transportation and the Nigeria Shippers’ Council (NSC).”
Earlier, the Minister of Transportation, Hon. Rotimi Amaechi had called on the United Kingdom, South Africa, Ghana and several other African countries to ratify the Rotterdam convention and rules on contracts on international carriage of goods by sea.
He said the Rotterdam Rules already adopted by Nigeria seek to create uniform set of standards that provides fairness of carriage of goods on the sea.
According to him, it will address the imbalance in the previous conventions, with developing nations making spirited efforts at securing a better deal with a view to providing necessary relief in the event of claims arising from in future carriage contracts.
By Ejike Ejike