Blue Economy: Oyetola challenges Nigerian youths to explore potential in Maritime sector

… As NIMASA DG assures of continued investments in capacity projects targeted at youths

The Minister of Marine and Blue Economy,  Adegboyega Oyetola, has tasked Nigerian youths to take advantage of the potential in the maritime sector so as to contribute immensely to the diversification initiatives of the Renewed Hope Agenda of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

Similarly, the minister urged the youths to shun vices that could hinder their growth but embrace hard work, discipline, decency, and selflessness that would make them responsible members of the society.

This is even as the Director-General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency ( NIMASA) Dr. Dayo Mobereola assured that the Agency would continue to invest in capacity development and projects targeted at the youths.

Oyetola spoke at the University of Lagos’ Employment Clinic conference, on Thursday, held at Tayo Aderinokun Hall, University of Lagos, Akoka, Lagos, where he delivered a keynote address on the immense potential of Nigeria’s blue economy and its role in youth empowerment.

The conference, tagged “Blue Industry Career Insights,”  was organised by the University in collaboration with Employment Clinic, under the Employment Transition Programme (EETP) of the University. The event brought together key stakeholders from the marine and blue economy sector to discuss career opportunities for young Nigerians.

Oyetola, who focused on the untapped potential of Nigeria’s blue economy and the vital role young people can play in its development, urged them to explore these opportunities, pursue their passions, and contribute to the growth and development of Nigeria’s blue economy.

“As you are all aware, the certificates that you will receive from this university at the end of your programme are awarded to you on the basis of character and learning. In the order of importance, character comes before learning. It is character that opens the door to knowledge and keeps it open until you are done with your courses and a degree is awarded to you. I, therefore, urge you as youths to shun vices that could hinder your growth.

“The world is replete with persons of talents but is looking for persons of character, who are in short supply. You are, therefore, enjoined to be good ambassadors of the university and Nigeria by displaying the highest level of character anywhere you find yourself,” Oyetola said.

The Minister highlighted some of the career opportunities in the sector to include maritime shipping, shipbuilding, ports infrastructure, coastal tourism, fishing, offshore renewable energy, marine and biotechnology, among others.

“The blue economy is not just about the sea; it is about the myriad of opportunities that lie within it. Our youth must be equipped with the skills and knowledge to harness these opportunities and drive Nigeria’s economic transformation.”

Oyetola also outlined several government initiatives aimed at fostering job creation in the blue economy as specialized training and certification programmes, international exchange programmes with maritime institutes, partnerships with private sector companies for internships and practical experience, and scholarships for students pursuing maritime studies.

Oyetola told his audience: “Your future is bright, and the maritime industry awaits your talents and ambitions. Together, we can build a prosperous and sustainable future for Nigeria.”

Welcoming the minister earlier, the Vice Chancellor of the University of Lagos, Prof. Folasade Ogunsola, described the event as a history making one, designed to hone the career trajectory of the undergraduates.

She thanked the minister for honouring the university’s invite, saying ” our doors are wide open to industry partnership for career development services for our students. The maritime sector is the second largest

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