CILT Interview: "Multimodal West Africa Expo 2018 would avail members of the Institute, especially Corporate Members the networking platform as well as access to manufacturers and equipment services companies that they are longing to connect with."

1. Can you please tell us about your organisation while highlighting your major services?

The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) is a Membership organization of professionals and practitioners in the logistics and transport industry. The Nigeria Branch of the CILT is one among other 33 Member Countries of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport, International. CILT was established in 1919 and acquired the Royal Charter in 1927. We train our Members on the Art and Science of logistics and transport, run conferences and seminars, where information and knowledge on industry direction and best practices are shared. We certify Members and are currently seeking legislation to commence issuing professionals and practitioners, operating licenses. We also perform advocacy roles for our members, especially our Corporate Members, who are leading operators in the industry. CILT also accredits Training Providers to deliver its curriculum and professional syllabus to their students and others seeking to write CILT Examinations and obtain Logistics and Transport Professional Certificates.

2. Based on the position your organisation occupies in the Logistics and Transportation industry, what is CILT currently doing in the Maritime sector.  

The potentials of the Maritime sector in the economic growth equation of Nigeria have suddenly been realized. The Blue Economy, covering virtually all aspects of sea borne trade, constitutes a huge sector of our National economy and is begging for investment and development. CILT had earlier realized this and had engaged in the building and development of the human capacity requirements of the sector. Outside the accreditation of some of our Training Providers who run courses in Maritime Training and Education, we also develop and run workshop sessions on various knowledge based areas of the Maritime industry for purposes of building capacity and closing knowledge gaps. This arrangement has helped the country in providing the needed professional hands to support the growth of the industry and push up the ease of doing Maritime business as it relates to professional practice and knowledge. The CILT in Nigeria today, attracted the highest number of Maritime workers in its membership than any other professional body.

3. What has been the major challenges of the association in the Logistics and transportation industry?

The major challenge of the Institute had been the lack of total regulation of the entire transport, logistics and supply chain industry in Nigeria. The Institute however, is pursuing the enactment of the CILT, Bill. The Bill has passed through Public Hearing of the House of Representatives, and is now awaiting passage and concurrence of the Senate. The Bill seeks to empower the Institute to document and register all practitioners and professionals, in such a way that it would be in a position at all times, to regulate standards and ethics of professional practice in the Nigerian Logistics and transport Industry. This will further agitate CILT’s challenge to set standards of professional practice and ensure quality of service delivery in the Industry. Another important challenge of the CILT is the task of capacity building for professional practice. To this effect, the CILT is challenged to develop and deliver professional training programs as a requisite qualification for scaling through the professional ladder by members. Additional challenge of capacity building is in our posture to continuously provide latest refresher training programs that brings up-to-date professional knowledge and skills to all category of members and the industry at large.

4. What is your position on the recent review of the ‘Cabotage Act’.

The Cabotage Act as we currently have it has not been reasonably implemented. The cargo carriage enforcement provisions are favourable, but the country is presently facing poor capital outlay for taking advantage of that. The procedure and processes for assisting local ship owners to increase their capacity in ship acquisitions of competitive standard to key into the Cabotage Regime have not adjudged to be difficult to meet by the operators. In the face of these challenges, Nigeria has continued to take the backside in shipping. It is in part, an effort towards streamlining these processes and procedures that the review was contemplated. In that regard, a review of the Act to make it more flexible and participatory would help in entrenching the full advantage of the ‘Cabotage Act’.

However, the Cabotage Compliance Strategy recently adopted and being driven by the new Leadership in NIMASA is aimed at ensuring indigenous capacity, employment creation and generating wealth. We need to put a tab on NIMASA to ensure that they deliver accordingly.

5. In view of the recent partnership between NIMASA and NIWA in managing the inland waterways, do you think this partnership will be successful or remain a conflict of interest?

Firstly, NIMASA and Nigerian Inland Waterways Authority have their distinct responsibilities and there has not been any conflict of interest. Secondly, the common denominator between the two organizations is the element of water in the inland and other maritime areas. However, capacities and collaborations can be built and harnessed between the two organizations in providing safe, efficient and sustainable waterways activity. Simply said, there is none and there won’t be any conflict of interest or function between NIMASA and NIWA, rather the need to activate synergy, collaboration and complementarity between tasks of providing means of Navigation on the Inland Waterways by NIWA and the tasks of building the interface between Coastal and Inland Shipping service through provision of Safety and security administration mechanisms by NIMASA, is the trend in the relationship between the two organizations.

6. What in your view are the challenges to developing effective supply chain solutions in Nigeria?

Nigeria is coming strongly up as an emerging economy. It’s economic, institutional and government structures supporting this growth are also being developed to suit its current level of economic growth. Accordingly, supply chain activities, being a critical arm of international trade relationships, are also facing the same phenomena. As we grow and progress through these challenging steps and take necessary measures to shape them up, we come up stronger and neater. Therefore, the coding system of items coming under our supply chain activities, their classifications, pricing, packaging and labeling, including assigning barcodes and codifying them with their specific content declarations and compositions, as well as having them in verifiable digital format, for developing systems and codes around them, are some of the challenges we currently face. 

7. How do you think members of your association can leverage on the potentials Multimodal West Africa Expo 2018? 

The essence of the Expo 2018 is to create awareness of abundant business opportunities for operators in logistics and transport industry in Nigeria and the West African Sub-region. Accordingly, the Multimodal West Africa Expo 2018 would avail members of the Institute, especially Corporate Members the networking platform as well as access to manufacturers and equipment services companies that they are longing to connect with. They will also have the rear opportunity of meeting their representatives and sharing experiences. I see it as a positive development, where access to the critical needs of the organizations is provided on that platform.

8. What are you most looking forward to at Multimodal West Africa 2018?

I am looking forward to seeing our Corporate and individuals Members identifying partner organizations that can help with resolving their logistics and transport challenges. A lot of them are known to be facing intermodal connectivity challenges in their logistics chain across our boarders. In connection with that, and with the expected participating Organisations, we hope to use the platform to network and resolve some of these challenges. 

Mr. Ibrahim Abubakar Jibril, FCILT, is the National President of Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport, with 33years of industry experience, training in Aviation, HR and Public Administration. He has operated Helicopters, coordinated Multi-modal Transport Training, an Organisational Design and Restructuring Expert, Maritime Administrator and on Governing Boards. 


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