The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), has renewed its Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the World Maritime University (WMU), Malmo, Sweden, to boost capacity building.

The Director-General of the agency, Dr Bashir Jamoh, in a statement in Lagos on Sunday, noted that the MoU would also assist the growth of the Nigerian maritime sector.

Speaking after the signing of the virtual of the MoU, Jamoh noted, ” there is no substitute to education.

“The collaboration with the World Maritime University by NIMASA is to advance maritime interest, while addressing the changing needs of the maritime industry.

”This is based on sustainable capacity development; education, training and capacity building as well as play a major role in developing shipping in any nation.’’

Jamoh said that the agency was at an advanced stage of setting up a ‘Regional Maritime Safety and Security Research Centre’, to enhance research works.

He added that the centre would take care of capacity development in 25 African countries

“Graduates from the WMU, who are in the employ of the agency will serve as researchers and resource persons, sharing knowledge.

”And hopefully develop a research-based sustainable framework to provide solution to issues of insecurity in the Gulf of Guinea.

“The NIMASA Regional Maritime Safety and Security Research Centre will be a centre of excellence in research and we will collaborate and cooperate with other countries,” the director-general said.

The President of the WMU, Dr Cleopatra Doumbia-Henry noted that NIMASA was playing a leading role in developing capacity for the maritime industry in the Gulf of Guinea region.

She commended Nigerian students who had passed through the university, welcomed the agreement and added that ” NIMASA was one of the first supporters of WMU”.

Doumbia-Henry said that the initiative also supported the WMU’s commitment to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

“Nigeria leads, others follow. WMU is delighted to be associated with NIMASA and its work which extends beyond national boundaries and has a significant effect on the whole region.

“We are also pleased to have such a successful and warm relationship with NIMASA and its staff. It is a perfect example of international cooperation for sustainable growth.

“I look forward to the fruitful outcome of our collaborative efforts as articulated in the memorandum and based on the principles of equity, reciprocity and mutual benefit,” she said.

The agreement provides for maritime education, training, research and capacity building for officers of NIMASA.

Also, no fewer than 10 officers will be funded annually by the Agency to study at WMU in the MSc in Maritime Affairs programme based in Malmo, Sweden.

In addition, under the Agreement, NIMASA will sponsor at least one officer per year to study in the WMU/IMLI MPhil programme in International Maritime Law and Ocean Policy.

The agreement also provides for WMU to develop and organise short-term, specialised Executive Professional Development Courses (EPDCs), for NIMASA officers.