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In a move to tackle foreign domination of shipping business in Africa, the African Union, AU, has decided to adopt the Deep Blue Economy strategy by taking initiatives to promote maritime transport, port activities, maritime security, as well as interstate exchanges.

In a report “Africa Blue Economy Strategy”, the AU noted that foreigners intentionally destroyed the budding African shipping lines and conferences to ensure that only Europeans offer such services and at their own prices. Besides, the AU is also expecting port activity in Africa to reach two billion tonnes by 2040.

West Africa is home to port facilities in the process of continuous modernisation since the end of the colonial era. East Africa has expanded its ports, including Djibouti, which is responsible for exports to Saudi Arabia, Egypt and India. The port of Dar-Es-Salaam in Tanzania carries many imports from India and China.

To this end the group also concluded plans to reduce, if not eliminate foreign domination of shipping businesses in the continent as it commenced research and studies in fisheries, aquaculture, conservation and sustainable aquatic ecosystems, shipping/transportation, trade, ports, maritime security, safety and enforcement, coastal and maritime tourism, climate change, resilience, environment, infrastructure, sustainable energy and mineral resources and innovative industries, polices, institutional and governance, employment, job creation and poverty eradication as well as innovative financing. According to the report, the AU noted that in its current configuration, maritime trade remains dominated by arms conglomerates which unilaterally set freight rates and thus organise the shipping market as they see fit.

Source: Vanguard, Nigeria

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