Customs Clearance Begins at Cotonou Ports for Nigerian Importers

It is now permissible for Nigerian importers to ship their goods through Cotonou Ports in the Benin Republic.

One of the highlights of Mr. Alain Kinkati, Director-General of the Benin Republic Customs Service, two-day working visit to Abuja on Tuesday was the decision to establish a clearing centre for products destined for Nigeria.

Details of the framework are still being worked out, as revealed by Mr. Adewale Adeniyi, Acting Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS).

Duties on items destined for Nigeria would be calculated and paid at the country of origin, with the proceeds going to the Nigerian government via the Nigerian Customs Service.

According to Adeniyi, the framework represents a significant step forward in the ongoing efforts to facilitate trade and promote sub-regional integration with the neighbouring Benin Republic.

Working with the police authorities, he pledged to further decrease checks to an absolute minimum, and he said he had succeeded in “substantially reducing barriers around trade corridors.”

To further reduce vehicle smuggling, the Acting Customs Chief also said that preparations are nearing completion to integrate the agency’s IT infrastructure with that of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC).

In a same vein, the head of customs has stated that in order to improve the organization’s security, they are “harmonising the list of prohibited items with Benin Republic.”

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