Trans-border Crimes : Nigeria Customs Partners Benin Republic to tackle the menace

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Trans-border Crimes : Nigeria Customs Partners Benin Republic to tackle the menace

CGC Adeniyi promoting trade facilitation across the borders

From right CGC Adeniyi and his counterpart from Benin Republic :

The Comptroller-General of Customs, CGC Bashir Adewale Adeniyi MFR, has expressed his commitment to synergize with Benin Republic Customs, to enhance trans-border security and regulate trade between the two countries.

The Customs Boss made this known on Tuesday, September 12, 2023, when he officially received Senior Officers of Benin Customs, led by their Director-General, Alain Hinkati, at the Nigeria Customs Headquarters Abuja, in continuation of their two-day interactive session.

The session, which started on Monday, September 11, 2023, in Abuja Intercontinental Hotel, is expected to deepen the relationship between Nigeria and Benin, while promoting their age-old bilateral trade ties.

Other areas that the partnership will address include enhancing the proper use of International Transit Guidelines to govern transit-bound goods and fees from Cotonou Port to Nigeria; Integration of Nigeria into the Interconnected System for the Management of Goods in Transit

Continuing his official welcome address, the CGC said that the treaty between both agencies will prepare the way for an in-depth mechanism to harmonize import prohibition lists of products banned by the two countries.

His assertion:  “In view of our commitment to curb smuggling and unlawful trade through our borders, we deemed it necessary to meet and form a strong agreement that will support our strategic plans to implement technological-base measures of clearing and tracking of items at our borders.”

The CGC, however, affirmed that, the Nigeria Customs Service has concluded plans to promote good relations with border communities, with a view to actualising full participation of private sectors and frameworks of border Customs Units.

Speaking further, he appreciated the Benin Customs and Embassy of the country for expressing interest in collaborating with the Nigeria Customs Service to enhance trade facilitation.

He added : “The Customs administration in both countries have a very good idea and technical know-how on what it means with trade; thus, we are back with renewed enthusiasm to foster our relationship and make an impact on our trade facilitation roadmap.

“We hope that the programme will address the issues of trade and set a roadmap for implementation of new strategies that will enhance the economy and revenue in Nigeria and Benin Republic.”

Also speaking, the Director General of Benin Republic Customs, Alain Hinkati, said, “It is our hope that the programme will address the issues of trade and set a roadmap for implementation of new strategies that will enhance the economy and revenue in Nigeria and Benin Republic.”

According to him, the two organisations need to develop ideas to address transit issues and other progressive measures.

He said; “with the increasing global security challenges, the need for both customs administrations to work in synergy cannot be over-emphasized. Their intended mutualism will boost their relationship to improve the economy of both nations.”

Meanwhile, the joined communique signed by CGC Adeniyi and Director-General of the Bennese Customs, Alain Hinkati, highlighted that their meeting favours the desire of the two countries’ presidents: Bola Ahmed Tinubu and Patrice Talon, to strengthen shared commitment to enhancing trade facilitation and promoting economic development.

Other areas that will benefit the countries are fostering closer ties to Nigeria and Benin, reactivating the joint committee for monitoring trade and transit relations.

Responding to questions from journalists at the event, CGC said, “We are building confidence in the system offered by Republic of Benin. Our importers will use their ports. If there are people in Benin Republic who want to use our ports, we try to build trust in our systems.

“And by virtue of this agreement, it means that Nigerian importers willing to use the ports in Cotonou can have their goods cleared in those ports because there would be an opportunity for them to pay duties on goods that are liable for payment of duties.”

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