Monrovia – As part of efforts to enhance the revitalization of marine activities, the Government of Liberia through the Liberia Maritime Authority (LiMA) has signed the issuance of a Marine Notice for the implementation of the Convention on Facilitation of International Maritime Traffic (FAL Convention).
The program that was held at the Liberia Maritime Authority brought together officials from the National Port Authority and the Liberia Revenue Authority, the Liberia Drug Enforcement Agency, Boarding Party, the Shipping Agencies Association along with the APM Terminals.
Marine Notice is to provide guidance on implementing the requirements of the FAL Convention (as amended) to prevent unnecessary delays in Maritime traffic and aid government agencies in conducting uniformity formalities and procedures.
The Facilitation Convention was adopted on April 9, 1965, and entered into action on March 5, 1967. The objective of the FAL Convention is to prevent unnecessary delays in maritime traffic.
Speaking at the signing of the Convention at the headquarters of LiMA in Congo Town on Wednesday, April 6, 2022, Maritime Commissioner Mr. Len Eugene Nagbe, stated that the new regime will enhance economic growth as it will reduce the turn-around time for vessels sailing on Liberian ports.
According to him, the signing of the Convention will further help in the reduction of commodities on the local market.
“This will bolster the economy and so this signing is in the right direction for our country. We are working together as a government to address some repairable problems, “the Maritime boss disclosed.
Mr. Nagbe added that plans are underway to make the Freeport of Monrovia a 24-hour port, stressing that a lot of mechanisms are being put into place including the dredging of the port and replacement of navigation equipment that will make the port more effective and efficient.
“The more we delay the ships at our ports; it will negatively impact our country. It will impact the prices of the cube, petroleum products, and many more. Liberia is losing millions because we are not a 24-hour port. The document we are signing today is not an empty paper. We are working to make a change and we can change when we work together as a government and people,” added Nagbe.
The Convention was signed in the presence of port operators, who are to provide daily ship schedules to enable members of the boarding party to prepare for boarding party inspection.
Mr. Jonathan Graham, head of APM Terminals, in brief remarks, thanked the government for the “massive” step taken to modernize.
“This is a big step forward. We are extremely happy today and we are going to work with you, especially in the area of compliance,” stated Graham.
Mr. Thomas Doe-Nah, Commissioner General of the Liberia Revenue Authority, said the signing of the agreement means Liberia is on the right path to development.
Mr. Bill Twehway, Managing Director of the National Port Authority (NPA), stated that the issuance of the Notice is an outcome of concerted efforts by relevant arms of government with the singular interest of the nation.