Customs Service earns N6b daily due to border closure, Comptroller-General reveals

Customs Service earns N6b daily due to border closure, Comptroller-General reveals

The Comptroller-General of the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS), Hammed Ali; on Tuesday, February 18 stated that Nigeria rakes in between N5 billion and N6 billion daily from imports; since the closure of its land borders with neighbouring countries.

Ali further explained that the Customs Service earned duty collections between N4 billion and N5 billion; prior to the closure of the land borders.

The CG also attributed the rise to increased activities at the nation’s seaports.

”The Customs daily collection before the border closure ranged between N4 to N5 billion but now; the NCS collects N5billion to N6 billion daily as a result of the rise in activities at the nation’s seaports,” Ali said at a forum on the “impact of land border closure on the Nigerian economy.”

The forum was organized by the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI); and the support of the Centre for International Private Enterprise (CIPE) in Lagos.

He added that the sums being realized from the ports would help the Federal Government provide more infrastructures; and add fillip to critical sectors of the economy.

His words: “This (money) will be used to build more infrastructure; and develop critical sectors of the nation’s economy. The border drill has also curbed the diversion of petroleum products from Nigeria to our neighboring countries.

“NNPC records show a 30 per cent drop in fuel consumption; which means that we have been subsidizing fuel for neighboring countries.”

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The Customs boss also stated that before the border closure, NCS had engaged the customs of neighboring countries on several occasions; drawing their attention to the need to comply with ECOWAS protocols on the transit of goods and persons.

He said: “The protocol demands that when a transit container berths at a seaport; the receiving country is mandated to escort same without tampering with the seal to the border of the destination country.

”Unfortunately, experience has shown that our neighbours do not comply with the protocol. Rather they break the seals of containers on transit to Nigeria at their ports; transload the goods in open trucks that belong to their country. The trucks will in turn make entry into Nigeria and trans load same onto Nigerian trucks.”

 

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Mayowa Oladeji

A writer with a keen interest in human stories and topical issues around the world. mayowa.oladeji@1stnews.com

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