LAGOS – Maritime activities closed for the week with a projection by the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) that its members alone could generate N2 trillion as customs revenue in 2015.
The National President of ANLCA, Mr Olayiwola Shittu, made this known in an interview with newsmen in Lagos.
He noted that the association contributed over N800 billion to the account of the Nigeria Customs Service in 2014.
Shittu said that the efforts of the Federal Government in developing the maritime sector, especially freight forwarding, would assist in increasing revenue generation by freight forwarders.
The ANLCA chieftain suggested that the government should stop granting duty waivers, arguing that such waivers did not add any value to Nigeria’s economy.
“Revenue will flow if the gap is closed,’’ he told newsmen.
He also suggested creation of ministry of maritime services out of the Federal Ministry of Transport, which he said, had been saddled with too many jobs.
According to Shittu, establishing the ministry would result in opportunities for harnessing the potential of the maritime industry.
Also in the week under review, the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) said that 17 ships arrived at the Lagos ports with various products including general cargo, foods and petroleum products.
The NPA said that 33 ships were expected to arrive at the ports with foods and petroleum products as well as general cargo.
Also, the Customs Area Controller, Apapa, Lagos, Mr Eporwei Edike, during the week, warned customs agents to avoid cutting corners in terms of duty value, quantity and description of goods.
The controller said that such an act would continue to attract Debit Notes (DNs) to make up for the actual value.
Edike said that customs agents must always give specific names, size and model of goods for proper valuation to ensure payment of appropriate duties.
The Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC) promised during the week to collaborate with the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) to speed up establishment of truck transit parks across the country.
The Executive Secretary of the NSC, Mr Hassan Bello, told NAN that the council had commenced talks with the Kogi State Government on the matter.
Bello said that the project would be carried out on a Private/Public Partnership (PPP) model.
He said that maritime stakeholders would soon have a retreat to address the need to develop transport infrastructure with greater contribution from the private sector.
The Managing Director of the NPA, Malam Habib Abdullahi, had last week pledged continuous support for the Nigerian Navy in fighting piracy and other maritime crimes.
He said that the support was to ensure safety of the channels for smooth navigation in compliance with the International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) Code.
Abdullahi said this while receiving officers of the Western Naval Command, who paid him a courtesy visit in his office in Lagos.