By Dirisu Yakubu & Fortune Eromosele
The proposed national transport policy will unlock untapped potentials in the Maritime sector and the African Continental Free trade Area, AFCTA, the federal government has said.
Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi and the Minister of State, Gbemisola Saraki stated this in Abuja yesterday at the Annual Ministerial Press Briefing on Landmark Programmes, Projects and Activities of the Ministry and its Agencies in the year 2020.
According to Amaechi, the transport policy is a detailed regulatory document capable of giving Nigeria the most prominent position in the African Continental Free Trade Area.
He added that the policy, if complied with, will boost the economy and eradicate poverty.
The Minister further explained that in respect to the maritime sector, the Draft Maritime Policy will gain grounds from the National Transport Policy.
“Anything we would want to write about the Draft National Maritime Policy will be embedded in the National Transport Policy.
“If at all we write anything on it, it will not be submitted because it is already an offshoot of the National Transport Policy. The same with the National Road Transport policy, the Minister of State came with a detailed National Road Transport Policy which will be a part of the National Transport Policy,” he noted.
Amaechi also noted that “there is a committee working on the transport policy and we are having conversations with the office of the Vice President. In attendance is myself, the Minister of State for Transport, Minister of Works, Minister of Finance and it is being chaired by the Vice President. We intend to come up with the transport policy before the year runs out”.
Also speaking, Gbemisola Saraki, aligned herself with the National Transport Policy, stating that it would drive the transport sector forward. She however noted that the policy is expected to be documented by July, 2021.
“It will provide a sustainable, responsible, accessible and an economical viable transportation system to all Nigerians. This is key to economic growth and the overall welfare of the citizens,” she stressed.