The move towards the disbursement of the Cabotage Vessel Finance Fund (CVFF) is gaining momentum daily as the management of Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA and the executives of the five approved Primary Lending Institutions (PLI) for CVFF disbursement met this afternoon in Lagos.
The five PLI are Union Bank, Zenith Bank, Jaiz Bank, Polaris Bank and UBA.
Presiding over the meeting at the boardroom of NIMASA, the Director-General Dr. Bashir Jamoh welcomed the CEOs and said the essence of the meeting was to interface with them, let them know the nitty gritty of Cabotage Act and come up with modalities for the disbursement.
Jamoh noted that their engagement was to tap from their financial and lending experiences, to avoid the pitfalls of the CVFF’s predecessor, Ship Acquisition and Ship Building Fund, SASBF.
The NIMASA boss said that the SASBF collapsed because it was managed by the then National Maritime Authority, NMA and the Ministry of Transportation without requisite knowledge in loan disbursement and recovery. He said that till now over 8 shipowners have not paid back the SASBF loan.
He said the decisions reached between the banks and NIMASA on the disbursement methods shall be discussed at a large meeting between NIMASA and shipowners and other stakeholders. According to him, the final outcome of the large meeting shall form the fulcrum of the final decisions of the federal government on the disbursement.
Jamoh informed the bankers that CVFF funding is a counterpart one as NIMASA will bear 50%, the banks 35% and the shipowners will bear the rest.
The PLIs who welcomed the initiative, commended NIMASA and the federal government and expressed their readiness to key in into the disbursement but requested for more time, not later than one week, to do their own homework and report back to the NIMASA management.
Caption: Dr. Jamoh (right) presents a memorabilia to Managing Director of Jaiz Bank, Dr. Sirajo Salisu after the meeting.