The Customs Consultative Committee (CCC) which has Aare Hakeem Olarenwaju as its Chairman and Dr. Eugene Nweke as its Secretary has engaged the Customs Area Controller (CAC), Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Tin Can Island Port Command, Comptroller Dera Nnadi on the hiccups in NCS operations.
It drew the attention of the Customs Chief to what it called the “wider negative impact of the unstable foreign exchange regime on trade” in the country among other things militating against the supply chain.
It stated this recently when Nnadi paid a courtesy visit to the CCC at its office in Apapa, Lagos.
Speaking at the occasion, Olanrewaju used the opportunity to enlighten the Comptroller on the workings of the CCC while soliciting for broader areas of strategic consultations in order to redefine operational bottlenecks in the ports.
Olanrewaju who was the former Chairman, Governing Council, Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN), highlighted noticeable red tapes in the supply chain and recommended solutions.
He also made recommendations for achieving policy goals of the command in particular and the management of NCS in general.
The CCC Chairman reassured Nnadi of the committee’s co-operations and support towards meeting set goals, especially the command revenue target and presented the CCC handbook to him.
Giving reasons for his visit, Nnadi in his response said his visit is informed by his belief that responsible partnerships and collaborations are incomplete without strategic mobilization and alliances.
Insisting that the annual revenue target of NCS requires deliberate cooperation and the support of stakeholders, especially the trading public, he called for the support of CCC in achieving the goals TCIP Command has set for itself.
He commended the CCC for its support to his command in 2023 and solicited for its continuation this year.
Nnadi stated that the management of the command is committed to the implementation of the key resolutions reached at the recent stakeholders meeting held during the Comptroller General of Customs conference 2023.
The CAC insisted that the management of the command would not leave any stone unturned in pursuance to its trade compliance and facilitation quest just as he called on the trading public to sure up compliance in their trade transactions and requisite trade related applications via prompt documentation and honest declarations.
According to him, going forward compliance traders will be rewarded with prompt service delivery while sanctions on trade irregularities and breaches will be meted to the defaulting trading public (importer/exporter and their representatives) as provided in the new NCS Act 2023. Officers caught in the line of duty other than spotting and tackling trade infractions will as well be punished accordingly to achieve holistic and meaningful compliance.
On the allegation that NCS increased the benchmark for the surface payable Customs duty, he reiterated that at no time did the service set nor increased any benchmark other than the reality of the foreign exchange rate regime.
He argued that once the exchange rate drops, the payable surface Customs duty will as well drop.