The Nigerian Shippers’ Council and the Union of African Shippers’ Councils (UASC) in collaboration with United Nations Conference on Trade & Development (UNCTAD) are currently holding a Sub-Regional Workshop and Joint Standing Committee Meeting of Union of African Shippers’ Councils (UASC) at Sheraton Hotel, Abuja on Tuesday 25th & Wednesday 26th September 2018.
The Workshop with the theme:- “Port Concession in West and Central Africa; Impact on Economies of member states of the sub-region”, is targeted at the governments of member states, International and regional organisations and other stakeholders in the Trade and Transport facilitation process in the West and Central African Sub-Region.
Among other objectives, the workshop is expected to appraise the state of maritime transportation in West and Central African viz-a-viz other regions of the world and proffer solutons to challenges facing the sector; assess the implementation of WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) and issues relating to Port Operations; advocate for the development and maintenance of criticial trade support facilities/infrastructure that would promote efficiency, competitiveness and cost reduction in the carriage of goods as well as linkages to other markets.
Similarly, the workshop would look at the state of Maritime Transport in West and Central Africa: UNCTAD’s viewpoint; Sealink: A Panacea for boosting Intra-African Trade; charges, Surcharges and related costs of carriage of goods; Evaluation of IMO Container weighing regine Verified Gross Mass (VAM) and impact on shipping services/business.
It would be recalled that the Union of African Shippers’ Councils (UASC) as a specialised organ of the Maritime Organisation of West and Central African (MOWCA) comprises of nineteen Shippers’ Councils and similar organisations of West and Central African Countries. The Union with its Headquarters in Douala Cameroun comprises three main organs; The General Assembly, Steering Committee and General Secretariat.
The UASC became a member of the Global Shippers’ Forum (GSF) in September 2010 and maintains close reletions with other international organisations, notably; World Trade Organisation (WTO), International Maritime Organisation (IMO), World Customs Organisation (WCO), United Nations Commission for International Trade Law (UNCITRAL), United Nations Conference on Trade and development (UNCTAD).
The Nigerian Shippers’ Council has over the years under the auspices of the Federal Ministry of Transportation hosted the Sub-Regional Workshop that has gone a long way in the reduction of the incidence of transport cost on the economies of West and Central African Countries.