The National Association of Chambers of Commerce, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA) yesterday urged the Federal Government to adhere strictly to the provisions of the newly approved Common External Tariff (CET).
Acting Director-General of NACCIMA, Janet Omisore, made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.
Omisore said that the government should make deliberate efforts to monitor trade activities with the take-off of CET.
She urged the government to make deliberate efforts to monitor the activities of other member countries to ensure they complied with the laid down rules and protocols.
“Before now, even some ECOWAS member countries have not been honouring our ELS, we sometimes have issues with them which takes longer periods to be resolved.
“Another area the government and other stakeholders need to be alert to, is ensuring that the products that would be coming from those countries are really manufactured in them and not pre-packaged.
“This whole idea is for us to make trade relations easier and cheaper for us, so, dubious activities should not be condoned.
“It is also a call for our government to look into the issue of power and infrastructure, to boost our manufacturing sector, without this, the CET approval may not favour us,” she said.
She lamented the high rate of imported goods consumed in Nigeria and urged the government to focus more on locally manufactured goods.
NAN recalls that the Federal Government had on April 9, announced the approval of the implementation of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) common external tariff between 2015 and 2019.
Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, had earlier said that the government had also approved the implementation of the 2015 Supplementary Protection Measures (SPM) and fiscal policy measures.
She said that with effect from April 11, 2015, all imports arriving into the country should be subjected to the rates contained in the CET 2015 to 2019 framework and 2015 fiscal measures.
The approved SPM and Fiscal Policy Measures will comprise an Import Adjustment Tax (IAT) list which involves additional taxes on 177 Tariff Lines of the ECOWAS CET.
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