Duty imposed by Benin Republic Customs on transit goods hits N9 million per truck * As Investors lament punitive impact, calls on FG’s intervention

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* Duty imposed by Benin Republic Customs on transit goods hits N9 million per truck

* As Investors lament punitive impact, calls on FG’s intervention

* Duty payment impeding trade across West African sub-region – Ex- LCCI DG

* Says It’s total disregard for ECOWAS Protocol on trade

The former Director-General, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), Dr Muda Yusuf, has disclosed that duty imposed by Benin Republic Customs on transit goods passing through the country by road is currently estimated at an average of N9 million per truck.

Dr Yusuf, who is also the
Chief Executive Officer, Centre For The Promotion of Private Enterprise (CPPE), said that the duty payment is significantly impeding trade across the west African sub region.

According to him; Benin Republic Customs imposing duty on transit goods constitutes
total disregard for ECOWAS Protocol on trade and movement within the sub region.
“This development has been taking a huge toll on Nigerian businesses involved in cross border trade within the sub region”, he frowned.

He pointed out :
“Investors are already lamenting the severe impact of the punitive transit duty imposed by Benin Republic on transit goods passing through the country by road. It is essentially a blockade of movement of trucks through Benin border”

Dr Yusuf, who is also an economist, explained :
” In June this year, the Benin Republic Customs imposed an outrageous transit duty of an average of N9 million per truck for vehicles originating from Nigeria and crossing Benin border to other west African countries. This continues to make it very difficult for companies exporting or importing by road to do so.

” There is the theory that this is a retaliatory action by the government of Benin Republic following the border closure by Nigeria about a year ago,
which had since been relaxed. Investors would like to see a more effective intervention by Nigerian government to put an end to this punitive and obstructionist action by the government of Benin republic.

“We will implore the government to take a critical look at the concerns that have been expressed by business operators and address these concerns in the interest of investment environment and advancement of the Nigerian economy”.

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