The Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun has announced that the revised import and export guidelines would take effect from January 1, 2018.
Speaking in Lagos on Thursday at the sensitization workshop for stakeholders on understanding the Nigerian 2017 revised export and import guidelines, procedures and documentation requirement, Adeosun however, said the palletisation policy exempts goods already loaded for shipment to Nigeria prior to the commencement date.
The Minister who was represented by Mrs Owobunmi Siyanbola, Director, Home Finance, said the list of categories of goods that may be exempted from palletisation, where it is absolutely necessary would soon be placed on the ministry’s website as well as that of Nigeria Customs Services (NCS) adding that the guidelines had since April this year been circulated to the relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies for onward transmission to other stakeholders under their respective jurisdiction.
She regretted that the workshop had not taken place earlier than now to allow a three-month grace period before full implementation of the guidelines, especially in recognition of the time lag that might be required for the commencement of full implementation of the government policy on mandatory palletization of all containerized cargo imported into Nigeria.
Adeosun noted that the current guidelines review was informed by the need to further promote the ease of doing business in Nigeria, in line with the executive order No. 1.
“Attention has been focused principally on measures to ensure drastic reduction in time spent on processing of export and also ensure 24 hours clearance of cargoes imported into the country in order to promote formal trade and block loopholes for leakage of revenue accruable to the government”, she said
Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Dr. Mamoud Isa-Dutse said the ministry had received complaints from the business community about the existence of physical and administrative impediments to smooth export and import operations in Nigeria adding that the existing policy is long overdue for updating in line with dictate of the prevailing realities.
Represented by Director, Press, Alhaji Salisu Na’inna, Isa-Dutse said there was compelling need to review the guidelines to remove obsolete provisions and also take into account the volatile business environment.