As part of effort aim at easing cargo clearing procedures, the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA) Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has organised a three-day workshop for its stakeholders.
The workshop, which is the first of its kind in the NCS Zone ‘A’, according to the Customs Area Controller (CAC), MMIA, Comptroller Charles Edike, is to sensitise and educate stakeholders on cuurent Customs procedures.
Edike explained that, when stakeholders understand the extant Customs clearing procedures, not only will the compliance level by Customs agents increase, it will also mean increased revenue generation for the government.
He added that the command had not enjoyed a stable relationship with the stakeholders and, this adversely affected the command’s revenue generation.
“Before now we are not on the same page with our stakeholders, clearing agents, DTI (direct trader’s input) café operators, terminal operators, not everybody seems to know what they are doing so we feel we could bring them all together and let them know where we are coming from and where we are going to. At the end of the day if they understand the extant clearing procedures, it will be better for us and for them. That will also mean more compliance and more revenue for government,” he said.
On the Customs single window project, the Customs boss said that it is the ultimate, as, according to him, it will help overcome the complex system of data submission, thereby saving agents time in clearing their consignments.
“A single poortal where you submit your document, and every other person concerned will accept the document from there, is the ultimate. You don’t need to make photocopy for Customs, NAFDAC (National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control) or NDLEA (National Drug Law Enforcement Agency) . Once you push in your papers into one portal and right from there every other stakeholders will access the information from there, and, if they are concerned with the importation, they will do their work, and, if not, they will let go. So, to us, the single window is the ultimate, because it will mean more revenue for government,” Edike stated.
At the end of the three-day workshop, which began Monday, the stakeholders are expected to have been trained in Customs and Excise Management Act (CEMA), import procedures, valuation, classification, airport baggage declaration, bond and licensing, among others.
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