By Oke Peter
The Executive Secretary, Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), Engineer Simbi Wabote has commissioned a new security vessel, MV Tamuno-Dein II, acquired by BGAM Services Limited, the first oil and gas company to access the Nigerian Content Intervention Fund (NCI Fund).
The ceremony was performed on Friday at the Naval Shipyard, Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
MV Tamuno-Dein II is a multi-role ballistic security vessel, with protective machine gun panels, electronic fuel monitoring system and deck command center for security personnel. It will work with the Nigerian Navy to secure offshore oil and gas operations.
In his address, the Executive Secretary explained that “the NCI Fund is part of our initiatives to increase Nigerian Content in the oil and gas sector to 70 percent within the next 10 years. We launched the Fund about a year ago with five products, all at single digit interest rates.”
He stressed that an important condition for accessing the NCI Fund is that applicants must be contributors to the one percent statutory Nigerian Content Development Fund (NCDF).
He hinted that BGAM Services benefitted from the Fund because it was faithful in its contributions to the NCDF, kept its accounts correctly and met the corporate governance requirements of the Bank of Industry (BOI).
“You do not need to know any official of the NCDMB or BOI to access the loan. You just need to meet the criteria.”
He charged BGAM Services to repay the loan as planned and expressed optimism that other companies will benefit from the Fund in the coming months.
Making his presentation, the Chief Executive Officer of BGAM Services, Hon Lucky Brown confirmed that it took the firm less than two months to process its NCI Fund application. He noted that the acquisition of MV Tamuno-Dein II had increased the company’s fleet size to three vessels of different sizes and modes of operation.
Brown advised other companies seeking to access the NCI Fund to be methodical in their accounting and applications and seek help when they have difficulties.
The Managing Director, Naval Shipyard Limited, Commodore Abolaji Oreduru gave a goodwill message at the event and commended the Board for promoting oil and gas operations in the marine sector.
“We are into ship repairs, ship building and major fabrication. When people buy ships, they will come to us for maintenance and we are in business.”