By Innocent Orok
The Tin Can Island Customs Command in the development of its Standard Operational Procedures (SOP)has witnessed a major paradigm in its statutory functions. This trajectory also provided the needed impetus for the smooth implementation of the Presidential Directives on Ease of Doing Business.
It is instructive to note that the command has gone beyond revenue collection to creating an enabling environment for legitimate businesses to thrive in line with the Presidential mandate. It has also resolve to achieve speedy clearance of cargo from the Ports and reduce the cost of doing business.
These several factors according to the half year report from the Command, signed by the Customs Area Controller, Comptroller Musa B.A which was made available to the media by the Command’s Public Relations Officer, Superintendent Customs Uche Ejieseme has projected the Command as a hub and most business friendly with remarkable achievements in revenue revenue collection, trade facilitation, anti smuggling activities among others.
The Command generated and collected a total of N179,275,629,170.74 between January and July 10th 2019. A comparative review of the preceding year 2018 indicated that the Command realized N172,514,359,076.83. The latest report represents 52.28% of the annual target with a differential of N6,761,270,093.91 from the record of the previous year.
COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS OF REVENUE COLLECTION BETWEEN JANUARY 2018 TO JULY 10TH , 2019 are:
EXPORTS: The Command during the period under review embarked on full automation of Export procedures as a panacea for seamless transactions. To this effect, the Command achieved a total of 150,930.7 metric tonnes of Export with FOB Value of N68,887,226,493.00. It will be recalled that the Command, during the preceding year of 2018, recorded 118,452.87MTS of Export with FOB of N63,109,427.00.
The milestone recorded according to the Controller in the area of Exports in indicative of awareness by Stakeholders on the available opportunities inherent in Export businesses , as he assured that the Command will continue to sensitize and encourage would be Exporters.
SEIZURES AND DETENTIONS:
On anti -smuggling feats, the Command is leaving no stone unturned in the area of anti-smuggling as its recorded seizures of 5 x 40ft and 4 x 20ft containers consisting of various uncustoms goods during the period under review .The items ranges from Used Tyres and Used Rims, bags of Rice, Cartons of Tramadol and other Pharmaceuticals with a total Duty Paid Value (DPV) N1,159,215,637.00.
TRADE FACILITATION STRATEGIES:
The need for facilitation of legitimate trade is at the front burner of the Command’s discourse and this necessitated the creation of various platforms for expeditious resolution of disputes and issues related thereto.
The platforms includes
REGULAR STAKEHOLDERS ENGAGEMENT AND FEEDBACK,
DISPUTE RESOLUTION COMMITTEE,
TIME RELEASE STUDIES
HELP DESK AND
ONE STOP SHOP
FAST TRACK FACILITIES.
This approach according to the Command has led to the speedy resolution of disputes arising from Valuation, Classification, PAAR etc to the barest minimum.
The Command is also working out actionable modalities for the use of Barges in transferring Cargo from the Mother Port to off-dock Terminals. This is with a view to reducing congestion and speed up cargo delivery considering the fact that Cargo throughput is increasing, and road infrastructure is overstretched.
The Command will continue to strive for excellence in achieving the mandate of the Comptroller General of Customs, Col Hameed Ibrahim Ali(Rtd) and his able Management.
In the same vein, the Controller said efforts will remain in top gear towards the removal of bureaucratic bottlenecks and impediments in the trade value chain. He said “Our ultimate aim is not just to key into the Presidential Directives on Ease of Doing Business which is in line with World Customs Organization’s (WCO) Trade Facilitation Agenda but to be seen as being at the Vanguard.
” The Command would like to appreciate the support and collaboration of Partner Government Agencies – Standard Organization of Nigeria (SON), National Agency for Food, Drugs, Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Nigeria Police, Quarantine, National Environmental Standard and Regulation Enforcement Agency (NESREA), Importers, Agents and Other Critical Stakeholders including the Press both Print, Electronic and Online in this onerous task of Nation Building.
“The Command wishes to reiterate its commitment towards realizing and even surpassing the revenue target for 2019 as we urge our esteemed stakeholders and Officers and Men to rise up to this challenge.”