The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has issued an ultimatum to importers who are yet to perfect their Pre-Arrival Assessment Report (PAAR) to do so on or before next Monday or risk sanctions.
NCS had in December 2013 created a ‘provisional release’ window to clear over 99,000 Risk Assessment Report (RAR) it inherited from the service providers following its takeover of the destination inspection regime.
SHIPS & PORTS DAILY however gathered that some importers who benefitted from the provisional release window and collected PAARs have refused to pay the additional duty raised on their consignments.
Speaking with SHIPS& PORTS DAILY in his office yesterday, Public Relations Officer, Port and Terminal Multi Services Limited (PTML) Area command, Steve Okonmah, said beneficiaries of the provisional release who fail to pay the added duty on the goods before Monday next week risk losing their licenses.
“The idea was that because the PAAR was not out and we don’t want demurrage to be accruing we use provisional release then. Now that the PAAR is coming out, some importers have received their PAAR but because of discrepancy in the difference in what they are supposed to have paid which they underdeclared, they don’t want to come out. So, if those who are supposed to normalize their PAAR don’t do it before the April 14th deadline, definitely, action will be taken against them and the management may decide to block their license,” he said.
He said the Post Clearance Audit (PCA) unit of Customs is now reconciling the appropriate duty value of the affected goods.
Meanwhile, in a separate statement signed by the command’s spokesman, the NCS has directed that importers or agents who did not receive their pre-arrival assessment report under the provisional release window by 30th March should lodge complaints at the banks where they originated the transactions.