Customs generates N5bn daily for FG
.Ready to move overtime cargo at port
By Udeme Clement
The Nigeria Customs Service, NCS, has concluded plans to move overtime cargoes from PTML Port, in order to ease congestion in the port.
The Assistant Comptroller-General of Customs Zone ‘A’, ACG Kaycee Ekekezie disclosed this, on a working visit at the headquarters of National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders, NAGAFF, Apapa Lagos.
ACG Ekekezie, who represented the Comptroller-General of Customs, CGC Hameed Ali, explained that the decision to move overtime cargoes is imperative to create a conducive business ambience for promotion of trade in the maritime industry.
She said, “The overtime cargoes will be moved to Ikorodu Lighter Terminal, since the ports no longer have traditional government warehouses for such cargoes”.
Her assertion, “The question is; Why do we have congestion at the ports? This is because the shipping companies no longer do what they should but we are going to address that.”
The ACG went on, “For instance, a shipper brings in about 200 containers and drops them at a terminal. Instead of carrying the same number of empty containers, he starts doing posting. That is why we keep having a build-up of empty containers”.
She informed, “Now, If the shipping companies do not want to carry their empties, we will make them to start paying for them.
“Trade tradition makes room for government warehouses in the ports, because it is possible that all containers in a particular voyage will not go immediately.”
Giving more details of trade facilitation and compliance level, she revealed that Customs now generates N5billion daily for the Federal Government.
According to her, “With due compliance to import/export regulations, proper documentation and correct description of items imported or exported for Customs purposes, we will achieve greater results.”
The ACG assured freight forwarders of Customs commitment to enhance trade facilitation at all times, for greater economic growth and development.
In his remarks, the Founder of NAGAFF, Dr. Boniface Aniebonam expressed appreciation for the ACG’s visit.
He advised Customs to address the issue of freight forwarders travelling all the way from Lagos to Abuja, for renewal of licences, when it can actually be done through automated system at the zonal office in Lagos.
Dr. Aniebonam also advised freight forwarders on the importance of trade compliance with government fiscal policies, in order to avoid losses through seizure of their goods.
More so, the NAGAFF Founder called attention of the ACG to non-engagement of freight forwarders by Customs before any upward review was done in the exchange rate for trade purposes.