Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, has called for an urgent review of the Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN) bill to improve best practices in the country’s port system.
He stated this at the maiden graduation of over 400 trained professionals in freight forwarding and supply chain management at the University of Lagos (UNILAG) at the weekend.
Amaechi, represented by Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Transportation, Dr. Magdalene Ajani, urged the legislature to come forth with a bill to correct some lapses experienced by the industry.
He also urged the graduating students to embrace technological advancement in tackling port issues.
The Registrar, Samuel Nwakohu, stated that the training is to meet the mandate of the Act towards achieving economic growth in the country.
He added that it would upskill the graduands who are already practising, urging them to adopt international best practices on freight forwarding.
In the same vein, the Vice-Chancellor, UNILAG, Prof Oluwatoyin Ogundipe, represented by Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Academic and Research, Prof. Familoni Oluwole, applauded the management team for the training, noting that it would breed more professionals in the system.
He said: “Gradually, this training would remove all unlicensed and unrecognised freight forwarders, supply chain managers so that we can have professionals. When people see that it is only those who are regulated that are practising, they will come for training.”
Meanwhile, the Acting Managing Director, Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Mohammed Bello-Koko, said that while the domestic freight logistics industry in Nigeria remains highly fragmented, the big-ticket jobs are in the hands of foreign and multinational companies from Europe and Asia.
He said the freight and logistics market in Nigeria has had to grapple with several challenges such as poor hinterland infrastructure, regulatory inconsistencies, insufficient investments and high operating costs, among others.
Bello-Koko said it is no surprise that Nigeria’s ranking in the global Logistics Performance Index is not where it should be, in view of the size and volume of the country’s trade.