Guidelines For Import and Clearance of Goods from the Borders

Guidelines For Import and Clearance of Goods from the Borders
Comptroller General of the Nigerian Customs Service, NCS, Col. Hameed Ali (rtd)

To compliment the World Customs Organization (WCO) recommendations, every administration has its guidelines for import and clearance of goods. These procedures were highlighted by the Deputy Controller, Enforcement of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) at Tin Can Island Port during a recent port stakeholders’ summit on the place of ethics and integrity in international trade. He listed the approved documents to include:

•             e. Form ‘M’
•             180 days renewable once for general merchandise
•             365 days renewable for capital goods
•             Used vehicles and personal effects are exempt
•             Could be valid or non valid for FOREX
•             Marked as BA for goods subject to DI and CB for those exempted
•             To be confirmed by Authorised Dealer Bank
Profoma Invoice
 Valid for three months
Must have proper description of goods, generic product name, type, category, marks, brand name, model, reference number, quality and packaging, country of origin, batch number, active ingredients, shelf life etc.
All documents must be labeled in English Language.
•             CCVO
•             e-Form M number
•             Description of goods
•             Port of destination specifically stated
•             Ship identification
•             Final Invoice, Packing List, Bill of Lading/Way Bill, Phytosantary and other regulatory  Certificates where required.
Import Procedures
Completed Form M should be submitted to Authorized Dealer Banks attaching:
•             Profoma Invoice
•             Insurance
•             Regulatory Certificates
•             All these prior to validation of the Form M.
•             ADB ensures Form M is completed, compare with originals, conduct KYC and submit to NCS.
Meanwhile, DC Nnadi pointed out the responsibilities of the Customs to include:
•             Receive Form M and accept or reject same
•             Generate PAAR
•             Circulate Cargo Manifest as soon as it is received.
•             Select Risk Management Level
•             Conduct Cargo examination
•             Acknowledge payments
•             Make necessary intervention where necessary and interface with other regulatory agencies
Responsibilities of Importer & Supplier
•             Importer ensures that Profoma Invoice conforms with National Guidelines, all documents are genuine, verifiable, valid and clear documents sent to ADBs and that goods are shipped.
•             Supplier provides CCVO, transport documents like Bill of Lading and forward them to ADB.
Responsibilities of Authorized Dealer Banks & Shipping Lines/ Carriers
•             ADBs endorse and upload documents for issuance of PAAR, conduct KYC and keep document records for CBN and ensure that the documents are received within 21 days
•             Shipping Lines ensure that goods are covered by Form M by reflecting it on the Bill of Lading, provide manifest & palletize the goods
Import Duty Payment
•             CIF remains the INCOTERM for payment of goods in Nigeria
•             Payment is at ADB where Form is obtained
•             Personal Effects and used  vehicles of certain categories can pay at any Bank
•             Payment is received after matching the documentary Assessment with the online copy
•             e-Confirmation is sent o NCS
Responsibility of Declarant
·         Declarants prepare the SGD with information derived from relevant documents e.g.: Final Invoice, CCVO, Bill of Lading /Air way Bill /Road waybill, Packing List, Permit (where necessary), Insurance, Form ‘M’, PAAR, etc.
·         These documents are obtained from the Importer, who would have received them from the Supplier and from the ADB at which the e-Form M was validated
·         SGDS are then prepared at either of the two  DTI:
Private DTI in the office of Importer or Agent or the Public DTI
A private DTI is connected to NCS Server via a PC and a telecom channel (internet, VSAT, radio, VPN). Using your private DTI prepare an SGD based on the approved Form ‘M’, CCVO, Bill of Lading, Packing List, RAR
Public DTI Café
• Capture SGD information
• Assess your SGD
• Print SGD and Assessment Notice
• Sign SGD and insert into a folder together with Invoice CCVO, Bill of lading /Air way Bill /Road waybill, Packing List, Permit where necessary, Insurance, Form ‘M’, RAR

Nigeria Trade Hub
To aid transparency and trader compliance, a complimentary online tool was developed by NCS to provide timely trade information including classification to the trading community.
WCO, describes the Nigeria Trade Hub as;
                                “…as an inspiration to all Nations in search of transparency and trade facilitation –”
                                WCO July 2014” 14FLO306E/DT

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