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Customs Corner

Customs PTML Command Generates N213 Billion, Engages Stakeholders On Export, Trade Facilitation, Others



Author: Cynthia Idowu; Lagos.

The Port Terminal Multiservices Limited (PTML) Command of the Nigeria Customs Service has released the revenue generation scorecard of the Command from January to November 2022.

Giving a comparative analysis of the revenue collection within the period under review at the Command Headquarters in Lagos, the Customs Area Controller of the PTML Command, Comptroller Suleiman Bomai said, A total sum of N213,405,461,873.00 was collected as revenue between the months of Jan-Nov, 2022, compared to Jan-Nov, 2021, which was N205,157,478,605.00 an appreciation of N8,247,983,268.00 translating to an increase of 4%.

“I love challenges, and I would have loved to double that figure, which we can do, but the volume is another thing. If the volume could have remained the way it was, I would have generated at least N1b in this command. But because of the volume, I also interfaced with Grimaldi, and they told me about the external and internal factors which limited the import of vehicles.” He revealed.

Similarly, the CAC while Engaging the Stakeholders harped on the need for constant engagement as directed by the CGC, Col. Hameed Ali (rtd). This he said, is imperative to look always at any loopholes and attend to them immediately.

“Since the inception of this regime, the CGC has directed that there must be engagement because we have looked at the gaps which stemmed from lack of engagement between the NCS and the stakeholders. We also have strategic partners, who have some government agencies that work together with us, and there must be cooperation and synergy, and we cannot achieve that without engagement. The idea of engagement is, let us review what we have done, issues at stake, challenges, and strategies to move forward, and it has to be constant because trade is dynamic.” The CAC reiterated.

Speaking further he said, Nigeria used to be dependent on forex from oil, as over 90% of the Country’s revenue was generated from it, but was taken aback by the global shock which affected prices and values of the oil.

“We had to think out of the box. Any economist knows that it is export that finances import, in that sense, when you export forex, you then use it for the importation of raw materials, semi-finished goods, and finished goods. Now that there is a scarcity of forex as a result of lack of inflow due to the drop in the price of oil and so many factors, Nigeria could do better if we encourage our non-oil export to grow in such a way that it can then contribute to the forex inflow into the country because it is through the forex that you get access to it before you can import. That is why I said it is export that finances import, and this time around, it is the non-oil export that we want to grow so they can add to the oil export, thereby increasing the forex. That is why I emphasized export.” He noted.

Also on VIN valuation, the CAC said, NCS is one of the most automated government agencies. “We have the capacity and officers to roll out any product, and when we rolled out the VIN valuation, we sensitized the stakeholders; to me, it is a success story. At the same time, it was not 100% complete because there are what is called the standard and non-standard, and I hope that the latter will soon be automated. If we can do that, then we would have completed the automated process of vehicles.”

“The automation process does not stop there, as even the enforcement aspect is also being automated. The era of someone clearing their vehicle from the port and being stopped along the way by an officer for value checking is gone; now, they have a tab on which they can check if the duty is standard, which takes less time. Some of the beautiful things about the VIN valuation are that we have reduced the cost of clearance, and we have maximally reduced contact because that is the most dangerous thing during the clearing process; it ushers in what I call bilateral tax evasion. When there is contact, the taxpayer and the tax collector connive to cheat 200 million Nigerians.”

“Today, from the comfort of your house, you can pay your duty, do your assessment at the clearing zone and other procedures, and all that will be left is the examination and picking your vehicle, and once it is standard, you have no issues. The only issues we usually have are from the non-standard aspect, where the management is trying to automate, and once that is done, we are good to go.” He explained.

The General Manager of Grimaldi in charge of Commercial, Chioma Ayanonu seconded the CAC’s stance, according to her, Nigeria needs a paradigm shift from oil as there are many untapped potentials in Green energy, Electric cars, etc.

“The need for export cannot be overemphasized, it’s more important now than ever, Nigeria has been heavily dependent on oil. For every seven import containers we bring in, only one goes out as export, there is a huge stock of containers that go out empty when they can load them with export. The more export we can send, the lower we can charge as freight.” She added

Customs Corner

Customs Kickstarts 2-Day ICT/Modernization Retreat for Management Team



Author: Muhammad Bashir.

The Comptroller-General of Customs (CGC), Bashir Adewale Adeniyi, marked Friday, 1 March 2024, as a pivotal moment for his administration, heralding an era of digital transformation within the Service.

Addressing attendees at the 2-day NCS 2024 ICT—Modernization Management Retreat in Abuja, CGC Bashir Adewale reiterated his commitment to leveraging technology to streamline customs operations. He emphasized the importance of engaging stakeholders to ensure the seamless execution of this ambitious project.

“In 2024, we cannot afford to remain entrenched in outdated practices. Stakeholders are demanding a Customs Service that embraces technology to enhance efficiency and transparency.” CGC Adeniyi remarked.

Encouraging his Management Team, particularly in ICT, to champion the digitalization efforts, he urged them to harness internal resources to expedite the implementation of the electronic cargo tracking system.

He, however, emphasized that “It is imperative that we modernize every facet of the Customs Enforcement Ecosystem. We must also integrate technology to fortify our operations.”

Welcoming the CGC to the retreat, the Chairman of Trade Modernization Project Limited, Alhaji Saleh Ahmadu, lauded the CGC’s resolve, highlighting the pivotal role of trade in national development. He underscored that the modernization initiative would revolutionize the NCS’s operations, fostering a conducive environment for trade across Nigeria and the African continent.

Assistant Comptroller-General of Customs in charge of ICT/Modernisation, ACG Kikelomo Adeola, commended the CGC’s unwavering commitment to the project. She highlighted its significance in reshaping, digitizing, and modernizing the Service’s activities.

“Welcome to this landmark retreat, where we embark on a journey to recalibrate and modernize the Service, aligning it with international standards.” ACG Adeola stated.

The NCS 2024 ICT-Modernization Management Retreat sets the stage for a transformative era in the Nigeria Customs Service, signaling its readiness to embrace technological advancements in pursuit of operational excellence.

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Customs Corner

Customs Oyo/Osun Command Intercepts Fake Drugs, Others, Worth Over N1.8B



…As Comptroller Ben Expresses Dedication to Protect Well-being of Citizens

Author: Lucy Nyambi.

The Nigeria Customs Service, Oyo/Osun Area Command, has intercepted sacks of fake Pharmaceutical drugs worth over N1.8billion.

Customs Area Controller Comptroller Ben Oramalugo disclosed this to reporters during a press briefing at the Command headquarters on Thursday, February 29, 2024.

Comptroller Ben stated that the Commands anti-smuggling activities have been strategically positioned to ensure the Federal Government’s policy on border closure is totally enforced by preventing the importation of prohibited items harmful to the great citizens of Nigeria. He also expressed the effort to prevent the exportation of essential food resources for individual economic gains by some economic saboteurs.

“We have successfully intercepted and seized contraband goods, including items that pose threats to economic stability and lives of citizens in the country,” He added.

Highlights of the seizures include 53 sacks of fake Pharmaceutical drugs with a Duty Paid Value (DPV) of ₦1,739,000,000.00, 1,309 pieces of used tyres with a DPV of ₦70,140,000.00.

Others are; 345 × 50kg bags of Foreign Parboiled Rice, 344 × 25 litres of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), 4 Wraps (4 Kilogram) of Indian Hemp, 45 Sacks, 8 Sacks (9 Bales) of Used Clothings and Shoes, 34 Cartons of Foreign Wine, and 40 Bottles (5 litres), 21 Bottles (1 litres) of Foreign Vegetable Oil, all with a Total DPV of N1,890,022,931.00.

The CAC stated that, despite the prevailing economic challenges, the Command demonstrated resilience and efficiency in revenue generation by collecting the sum of N5,664,295,751.15 in February 2024. When added to the sum of N6,824,954,338.96, already collected for January 2024, the cumulative sum of N12,489,250,090.11 was collected so far for the fiscal year of 2024.

Comptroller Ben reiterated that all Borders within the Commands Area of Responsibility are still closed due to the Federal Government policy on Border closure and as such, “Command Officers remain vigilant and dedicated to preventing the smuggling of items that could compromise the health and well-being of our citizens.”

He appreciated the efforts of all Traditional Rulers, Local Government Chairmen and Key Stakeholders in both Oyo and Osun States, who have continued to enlighten their people about the negative effect of smuggling on the economy.

The CAC expressed the Nigeria Customs Service’s unwavering commitment to transparency, accountability, and the nation’s overall well-being. “We are confident that, through collective efforts, we can overcome the challenges we face and contribute to a more secure and prosperous future for Nigeria.”

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Customs Corner

COWA Collaborates with Youths, Women to Combat Drug Abuse



Author: Iruoghene Abra, Muhammad Bashir.

The National President of the Customs Officers’ Wives Association (COWA), Mrs. Kikelomo Adeniyi, has expressed readiness to partner with the National Youth for Women Empowerment and Education in Nigeria as part of her plans to empower women through various ‘progressive’ programs aimed at improving their economic status.

Mrs. Kikelomo made this declaration during a meeting with members of the National Youth for Women Empowerment and Education in Nigeria, led by Ambassador Ibrahim Ibrahim, at the COWA National Secretariat on Thursday, 29 February 2024. She also emphasized her dedication to supporting women through educational initiatives.

In an address, Mrs. Kikelomo commended the organization’s executives for their tireless efforts in achieving the organization’s goals and objectives. She urged the young executives to continue their exemplary work in serving humanity.

Highlighting COWA’s activities, the President outlined initiatives such as providing support for women and children, empowering them with new skills and startup kits, and serving as the voice for the voiceless in society.

She emphasized that COWA stands as a pillar of support for wives and children during times of need, advocating for the rights of women who face similar challenges and discrimination in society.

Addressing the importance of mutual support, the COWA National President stressed the significance of women supporting each other to overcome obstacles and achieve their full potential.

She remarked, “The strength of a woman should not be measured by the challenges she faces but by her resilience in overcoming them.”

Continuing, she emphasized, “A healthy wife brings a wealthy life, as the well-being of women is crucial for the prosperity of households and communities.”

Mrs. Adeniyi highlighted the transformative power of education for women, stating, “When women are empowered, they contribute significantly to the economy, health, education, and all sectors of society, leading to positive change.”

She advocated for women to hold significant societal positions, citing their consistent ability to surpass expectations.

Mrs. Adeniyi reiterated COWA’s commitment to empowering women and children, expressing willingness to collaborate with the National Youth for Women Empowerment and Education in Nigeria to achieve shared objectives.

In response, the National Coordinator of the National Youth for Women Empowerment and Education in Nigeria, Ambassador Ibrahim Ibrahim, briefed COWA on the organization’s activities, which include encouraging women to embrace education and advocating against child abuse and domestic violence.

He highlighted the organization’s focus on supporting widows and children, facilitating skill acquisition, and caring for the elderly, praising Mrs. Adeniyi’s leadership and integrity expressing confidence in her ability to lead COWA to greater heights.

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