The Nigerian Ports Authority says it has suspended its service boats operation to debtor International Oil Companies with immediate effect.
In a statement signed by the General Manager, Corporate and Strategic Communications, NPA, Abdullahi Goje, the authority said the suspension would be effected in all its pilotage districts until the full settlement of debts accruing from unpaid dues by the IOCs and other beneficiaries of its services.
The authority had recently notified that it might prevent Engina FPSO, due to arrive in the country in January 2018, from accessing the country’s waterways.
According to Goje, the decision to stop the operation of its service boats to debtor companies followed the failure and refusal of the affected companies to honour their obligations to the NPA in spite of several reminders.
The statement said, “Given the fact that the companies, some of whose indebtedness runs into tens of millions of dollars for over two years, ignored the advice given by the NPA, the authority had no choice but to pursue this course of action, which has been communicated to all companies concerned.
“On the Engina FPSO, whose main component is currently sailing from South Korea to be coupled with its top side being fabricated at LADOL Free Trade Zone, Tarkwa Bay, the refusal of the parties involved in the project to request for towage and pilotage service from the NPA (being the only organisation empowered to provide same in the country) is contrary to the laws of the country and would be resisted.”
Goje explained that notice had already been given to the promoters of the FPSO to the effect that the vessel would not be granted access to the country’s waterways.
He added that the NPA would pursue legal remedies in its determination to ensure that no organisation impeded on the mandate of the authority as provided for in the Port Act (II)