…says it’s a game-changer that will revolutionise trade

The Federal Government on Tuesday launched the National Single Window initiative, describing it as a transformative project that will propel the nation’s economy to new heights.

President Bola Tinubu, who launched the initiative, said it is a game-changer that will revolutionise the way trade is conducted in the country.

Speaking at the launch of the initiative at the State House, Tinubu said the Office of the President will oversee the steering committee that will drive the reform process forward.

He outlined the benefits of the initiative, saying by simplifying government trade compliance through a digital platform, Nigeria will unlock the doors to economic prosperity.

“This initiative will link our ports, government agencies, and key stakeholders, creating a seamless and efficient system that will facilitate trade like never before,” he said.

The President further explained that paperless trade alone is estimated to bring an annual economic benefit of around $2.7 billion, noting that countries like Singapore, South Korea, Kenya, and Saudi Arabia have already seen significant improvements in trade efficiency after implementing Single Window systems.

“It is time for Nigeria to join their ranks and reap the rewards of a streamlined, digitized trade process. As your President, I have always believed in the immense potential of our great nation,” Tinubu said.

“We are a people blessed with resilience, creativity, and an unwavering spirit of enterprise. However, for far too long, our economic growth has been hindered by existing complexities and inefficiencies in our trade processes. Today, we say no more!

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“Imagine a Nigeria where businesses can save time and resources, where small enterprises can reach global markets, and where the informal eCommerce sector is brought into the fold, increasing our tax revenue base. This is the Nigeria we are building with the National Single Window.

“We cannot afford to lose an estimated $4 billion annually due to red tape, delays, and corruption at our ports. The National Single Window will address these issues head-on, preventing revenue leakage and facilitating effective trade. By doing so, we will create a more transparent, secure, and business-friendly environment that will attract investment and spur economic growth,” he said.

President Tinubu emphasised that the implementation of the National Single Window would not be an overnight process as it would require dedication, collaboration, and a phased approach in view of continental ramifications that extend far beyond national development imperatives alone.

“I assure you, my fellow Nigerians, that we are fully committed to seeing this project through. We will work tirelessly to ensure its success, engaging with all partner agencies and stakeholders to create a system that works for everyone,” Tinubu said.

“Moreover, the National Single Window is not just about Nigeria. By linking our system with those of other African nations, we will expedite cargo movement and optimize intra-Africa trade. This initiative is a testament to our commitment to regional integration and our belief in the power of collaboration.

“I call upon every Nigerian to embrace this initiative with open arms. Let us work together, as one nation, to make the National Single Window a resounding success. Let us show the world that Nigeria is ready to take its rightful place as a leader in global trade.

“Together, we will build a Nigeria that is stronger, more prosperous, and more united than ever before. The National Single Window is our gateway to that future, and I am honoured to lead us on this transformative journey,” he said.

Explaining the fundamentals of the project, Mr. Zacch Adedeji, Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), said data harmonization is a crucial component of the initiative, which involves enabling efficient capture, definition, analysis, and reconciliation of regulatory trade documents within one unified technological mechanism.