The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, has said that Nigeria imported about 400,000 vehicles between 2015 and 2020.
Ahmed made the disclosure at a one-day sensitisation on the National Vehicle Registry (VREG) on Tuesday in Kano.
The minister, represented by the Director Technical Services in the ministry, Fatima Hayatu, said, “The NBS (National Bureau of Statistics) confirmed that between 2015 and 2020, Nigeria imported an average of 400,000 vehicles. An additional 40 per cent of the vehicles are smuggled into the country annually.
“A case study revealed that Nigeria was the hub of stolen vehicles, as Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) of vehicles in the country were usually unregistered. Consequently, vehicles within the shores of Nigeria cannot be traced.”
According to her, the ministry is introducing the National Vehicle Registry (VREG) to address these challenges.
The system, she said, would provide a singular platform through which all relevant agencies reference vehicular data with a view of ascertaining ownership and value information.
She said the system would also assist to ensure accurate monitoring, documentation and tracking of vehicular activities across the country as well as enhance national security.
Assistang Comptroller General in charge of Zone B, Nigeria Customs Service, Uba Muhammad, said the initiative would ensure the security of lives and property.