The Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC) has confirmed that 70% of cargoes coming into the country are made possible by the informal sector affirming that it is a major player of the national economy.
Executive Secretary of the council, Barrister Hassan Bello gave the figure yesterday,at a one day awareness clinic for importers at Alaba International Market in Lagos.
Represented by the Assistant Director, Compliance Monitoring and Enforcement of the council, Mrs. Celine Amaka Ifeora.
Bello enjoined importers and traders to make input on government policy stressing the need for them to comply with guidelines for the clearance of goods at the nation’s ports.
He also stated that there is need for importers to be honest in their declaration adding that the council was created to ensure that Nigerian importers carry out their business under the most conducive environment where cost must be effective
Executive Secretary noted “we are also aware that many of your members have suffered delay in cargo clearance, payment of additional duty or outright seizures as a result of non-compliance to trade and cargo clearance guideline at the Nigerian ports”
“The informal sector of the national economy imports almost 70% of all cargoes coming into the country”
“Your members are therefore expected to make input in government policy on international trade”
“The only way to realise this is by partnering with the Nigerian Shippers Council to ensure that the concerns of your members are reflected in the government policies”
He however added that “it is in a bid to create awareness among your members that we decided to bring the programme to your door step”
“It pays to be an honest and complaint importer and it also guarantees continuity of your business”,he advised.
He also disclosed to the trading public about government introduction of the Advance Cargo Declaration (ACD) which is also known as International Cargo Tracking Note (ICTN).
Bello reiterated that the federal government introduced a scheme that will expose importers that engages in under declaration of concealment of goods,pointing out that the scheme will ensure that importers that do the right declaration will receive accelerated clearance of goods.
The council’s boss further noted that the Nigerian Shippers Council is in collaboration with the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) in ensuring that identified importers among the trading public are granted the status of accredited economic operators and their consignment cleared through green lane saying that such goods will be examined at the importers warehouse if need be.
Also , the one day programme organised by the council on awareness clinic for importers at Alaba international market was tagged”need for compliance to cargo clearance guidelines at the Nigerian ports and understanding International Cargo Tracking Note ”
By Ifeoma Oguamanam