Space law, if harnessed, can contribute at least three per cent to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), a former Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) President Dr Olisa Agbakoba (SAN) has said.
According to him, there are opportunities in space law that the government can exploit to generate much-needed revenue.
He spoke in Lagos at a briefing by the partners of Olisa Agbakola Legal (OAL) on how the government can grow revenue through new and unexplored areas of the law.
The SAN, whose firm is pioneering space law practice in Nigeria, advised the Federal Government to tap into its huge potential.
OAL recently launched the Space Law and Arbitration Association (SLAA), which intends to work closely with the National Assembly, policymakers and the National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA) to help strengthen the legal, institutional, and regulatory framework that governs space operations in Nigeria.
“Given Nigeria’s dwindling financial resources, new areas of income need to be unfolded by the government.
“Space law, which may sound esoteric, is huge, massive and can contribute three to four per cent of our GDP if well-harnessed.
“Also, development law can be applied to socio-political and economic systems to generate money.
“This law firm can assist the government to generate at least N7trillion annually. It’s easy,” the OAL Senior Partner said.
According to Agbakoba, there are also “completely untapped” resources in the blue economy (ocean) from which the Federal Government can earn a significant income.
Responding to a question, he said: “The future of legal services is in policy and public sector.
“OAL is the leading public sector law firm in Nigeria and assists governments at every level (federal, state, and local) and multilateral developmental agencies in addressing complex development issues.
“At OAL, we understand how the law fosters change; consequently, we lead the way in driving conversations around national policy and legislative developments.
“We continually and comparatively review the law, rules governing domestic micro-economic policy to contribute to the development of law and the effectiveness of its application,” Agbakoba said.
Head of Public Sector Practice at OAL, Collins Okeke, noted that the firm pioneered innovative legislations such as the Cabotage Act, the Fly Nigeria Bill as well as the court rules that introduced frontloading and “smart courts” that involve the deployment of technology.
“OAL has positioned itself to lead the provision of legal advisory services to players in the space law industry.
“OAL Space Law Practice is dedicated to the continued development of Nigeria’s space programme’s regulatory framework.
“Our space law practice is designed to offer advisory and policy-oriented services to both the public and private sectors.
“We have advised various government space agencies, including the National Space Research and Space Development Agency (NASDRA) and the Nigeria Communication Satellite Limited (NIGCOMSAT) on international best practices and laws relating to space administration in Nigeria.
“OAL contributed to the development of a national space policy for Nigeria and helped build the legal, regulatory, and institutional processes to support Nigeria’s space programme,” he said.
Managing Partner, Mrs. Yvonne Ezekiel, said OAL is the first corporate and commercial law in Nigeria to advise on crowdfunding and has initiated discussions with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to promote a legal framework for it.
A Partner and Head Dispute Resolution, Babatunde Ogungbamila and the Associate Partner and Head of Sports, Entertainment and Technology group, Beverley Agbakoba-Onyejianya, identified hard work, tenacity to get the job done, understanding clients’ needs and striving to produce winning results as some of what stand the firm out.
Source: The Nation Nigeria