President ANLCA, Hon. Iju Tony Nwabunike

National President of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents ANLCA, Hon. Iju Tony Nwabunike has said that the supply chain in Nigeria has the capacity to create over 50,000 direct and indirect employments through the seaports, airports and land border stations by delivering chains linking warehouses and markets, if these huge potential are harnessed optimally.

The President in a message to shippers, Customs Brokerage Agents, Freight Forwarders and supply chain stakeholders to mark Nigeria’s 60th Independence anniversary, said their roles in the import, export and supply chain management has made them crucial contributors no only to government’s revenue but also to the national economy.

He disclosed that this sector, which is currently playing a key role in government’s economic diversification programme from over-dependence on the crude oil to the non-oil sector, contributes substantially to the over N4trillion revenue generated by the Federal Inland Revenue Service FIRS and supporting the Nigeria  Customs Service in sustaining its annual N1trillion revenue collection.

According to him, the stakeholders’ professional calling as logistics experts, playing critical roles in e-commerce now requires them to think beyond clearing cargoes from the ports and be the chain linking people and business together.

While observing that ANLCA at 66, having been established in1954, has a similar trajectory with Nigeria, which is 60 and should not therefore glory in old age without commensurate maturity to match its many years of existence as a body of great professionals and must also not derail from its drive for success.

The message reads in part: “As we join in celebrating our great country Nigeria at 60, it has become imperative for us to reflect on the many untapped potentials we have as a country, as professionals and as business men.

“These reflections should be geared towards making us contribute more in making Nigeria greater, united and more prosperous.

“We should continually see ourselves as part of the move to diversify Africa’s largest economy from a totally oil dependent country to a viable country making sustainable revenue from non-oil sector.

“While I call on our members and professionals in our line of business to keep up their patriotic acts of engaging only in legitimate deals and prompt payment of taxes to government, it also rests on the Nigerian state to give us support.”

He however noted with regrets that the freight forwarding and logistics sector of the economy has not been captured under Federal Government’s post COVID-19 interventions to the private sector businesses through the Central Bank of Nigeria CBN and Bank of Industry BoI to ensure they remain afloat, given current harsh operating environment.

“Aside not getting any form of palliative from government, there is no offer of single digit interest on loans by government tailored towards our needs in procuring trucks, maintaining warehouses, investing in logistics aided technology like tracking devises and fleet of motorcycles for e-commerce transactions in a state of difficult traffic situation as what we experience in Lagos.

We call on the Federal Ministries of Finance, Transport, Trade and Industry, CBN, NCS and others to see us as professionals deserving of state support, not only as potential tax payers but because the likely quake or collapse of our sector will adversely affect the country’s economy.

“However, ANLCA under my watch, will open talks with government Ministries, Departments and Agencies MDAs to see how our sub sector can be integrated into government interventionist financial programmes and support initiatives.

“We are a great country with very copious potentials to be greater. This 60th anniversary of Nigeria’s Independence should spur us into more positive actions for greater good of larger number of our fellow compatriots.

“Let us join hands in ensuring that the labour of our past heroes in bringing us together doesn’t go in vain”, he said.