The Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo on Monday inaugurated 10 Governors, including Governor Babagana Zulum and some Federal officials as members of the National Blue Economy Project Committee.
Governors of Rivers, Lagos, Delta, Akwa Ibom, Ogun, Ondo, Cross River, Bayelsa, and Edo States, as well as Ministers of Foreign Affairs, Power, Finance, Environment, Trade and Investment, Agriculture and Water Resources, Chief of Naval Staff, Comptroller General of Customs, and heads of the Nigerian Ports Authority, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, Maritime Academy of Nigeria, Lake Chad Basin Commission, and the Nigeria Economic Summit Group were among those inaugurated at the Banquet Hall of the State House in Abuja.
The Vice President explained that the Blue Economy Project will offer several opportunities not only for the States where there are bodies of water, but for the entire country.
The VP while inaugurating the Committee spoke on the need for a legal framework that will make the National Blue Economy Project to be more robust than the international maritime conventions.
He further said areas such as ports, terminals, fishing, training, environment, tourism, power, oil and gas will be maximally exploited under the Blue Economy Project.
Osinbajo said: “There is no doubt that the Blue Economy is a new frontier for economic development and a means of diversifying the economy through the use of resources from oceans, seas, rivers, and lakes for the well-being of the people. It also provides positive contribution to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 2052 Africa Integrated Maritime Strategy (2052AIM), and the UN 2030 agenda” The VP said.
He added, “This concept for economic diversification is promoted by the international community, and provides friendly means of livelihood in line with this administration’s agenda on job creation. The ocean economy as an emerging economic frontier applies to ocean-based industry activities and the assets, goods and services of marine ecosystems.”
“Countries have to define the scope of their blue economy based on their priorities. For example, in Bangladesh, the ocean economy consists of the following broad and growing economic sectors; living resources, minerals, energy, transport trade, tourism and recreation, carbon sequestration and coastal protection. These industries and ecosystem services do not develop in isolation, but rather interact as an economic ecosystem,” the VP said.