Tin Can Customs Area Controller, Comptroller Musa Abdullahi

The Tin Can Island Command of the Nigeria Customs Service for the 2019 fiscal year ended December 31 recorded a major breakthrough in its non-oil export drive leading to 5.9 per cent growth in non- oil figures at the command.

The command had in the 2019 fiscal year recorded a total of 269, 820 metric tonnes of non-oil exports with Free On Board value of N130.2billion comprising mainly of agricultural produce as against the 254,862 metric tonnes with FOB value of N145.3billion recorded in the comparative period of 2018, which represents an increase of 14, 958 metric tonnes or 5.86 per cent.

In terms of revenue generation, the command also netted a total of N346.5billion for the year under review, surpassing its revenue target of N342.3billion by N4.2billion. These revenue figures also represent an increase of N2.97billion or101.21 per cent when compared with the N343.5billion collected in the comparative period of 2018

Customs Area Controller for the command, Comptroller Musa Abdullahi, who spoke on the command’s impressive export and revenue performances, attributed them to the transformational agenda put in place at the beginning of the year by the command.

According to him; “These performances came on the heels of the implementation of series of transformational agenda and Standard Operating Procedures SOP, developed to facilitate trade without compromising the extant provisions of the laws. The fact remains that the command was able to create templates and blueprints that guided its actions in line with the mission and vision of the Comptroller General of Customs, Col. Hameed Ali rtd. and his management team.

“The command also embarked on sensitisation of stakeholders and would be exporters on the need to take advantage of the potential inherent in export”.

He however pledged that the command will continue to sensitise stakeholders and would-be exporters in order to further boot the nation’s non-oil exports as a means of enhancing the balance of trade and in line with Federal Government’s efforts of diversifying the economy from the current over-dependence on oil and gas exports.

It was also gathered that within the review period, the command intensified its anti-smuggling campaign, which led to the seizure of a total of 53 containers comprising 16 units of 40-foot and 37 units of 20-foot containers. Also seized were non-containerised goods comparising rice, used tyres, pharmaceutical materials, vegetable oil and military accoutrements all with a total of Duty Paid Value of N5.876billion.

This also represents an improvement when compared to 16 containers seized in the comparative period of 2018 comprising 14 pieces of 40-foot and two pieces of 20-foot as well as five non-containerised goods including bales of second hand clothing, furniture, children toys, used bags and shoes, expired medicaments, used tyres, used refrigirators, among others with a total DPV of N2.883billion.

On trade facilitation, the CAC said that the command’s performance was an eloquent testimony and renewed enthusiasm to enhance efficiency during the period.

“For this, the command articulated various Trade Facilitation initiatives, which have been instituted as part of our Standard Operating Procedure SOP including the use of barge for movement of cargo.

“Accordingly, the Command developed a more cordial working relationship with the critical stakeholder through constant engagements. Similarly, we re-invigorated Dispute Resolution Committee to deal expeditiously with disputes arising from Valuation, Classification, PAAR, Rules of Origin etc. Importers or their agents are encouraged to take advantage of the availability of bond facility to take delivery of their consignments where disputes persisted”.

The Customs –boss thanked the officers and men of the command for their zeal and dedication to duty, saying that these impressive performances would have been impossible without them. He also commended stakeholders for their cooperation, assuring that the command would further simplify trade processes and procedures in the current year and beyond in the interest of Nigeria’s economy.