Council expects competitive customs procedures following implementation of Common External Tariff

Mr Lucky Amiwero

The National Council of Managing Directors of Licensed Customs Agents(NCMDLCA) says it expects a more competitive customs procedure as Nigeria begins the implementation of the ECOWAS Common External Tariff(CET).

President of the council, Mr Lucky Amiwero, disclosed this in an interview in Lagos.

He said the implementation of the CET will task the customs service to improve on its procedures as importers and agents would prefer to work with a more efficient customs process.

Amiwero noted that such reform would ensure efficiency of cargo clearance processes rather than merely changing personnel.

 “The name goes ‘Common External Tariff’ that means everybody within the ECOWAS region is going to implement the same tariff.

“The one that has been negotiated, treated are going to be negotiated; that is, if it’s five per cent here, it’s going to be five per cent in Ghana, in other West Africa countries who are members of  ECOWAS community.

“It is a tasking thing for Nigeria, very tasking in the sense that the goods, services and capital will be moving freely within the sub-region.

“And it’s a very tall order for the country because for now Nigeria is lacking in  many areas; in the areas of power.

“We are still grappling with power, while some countries within the sub-region have steady power supply.

Amiwero said that as the sub-region moved toward a customs union, the Nigeria Customs Service must not be politicised so that it could comply with procedures as legally provided for.

He said that the integration process was geared toward ensure the maintenance of a single trade block within the world.

He said that emphasis should be on policies that help to create employment and generate wealth, as a way to boost the nation’s economy.