Without mincing any word, it will definitely increase the cost of clearing goods from the port because at the beginning it was on N160 or N180 to the US dollar and now it is N282 to the dollar. That is what is bringing out all the confusion being witnessed at the port now. Because of this, a consignment that is to pay at 130 as a survey duty has increased to about 186 and in this era of P transaction, there is nothing that can be done than to oblige to federal government order because directly or indirectly the increment will affect the final consumer.
The 43% increase is a federal government initiative and the increase came about because of the exchange rate differentials. That automatically means that if you are bringing in a cargo after the introduction of that, definitely the duty is going to rise because of the exchange rate differential not because of the Customs duty rate as put in there by the Customs external tariff because there is a tariff book that tells you exactly how much you have to pay i.e the import duty for any cargo you are bringing in. There is no way Customs can do anything about the duty rate because it is a federal government policy as directed also by the CBN. They are only implementing government policy.
As a result of this, everything in Nigeria has gone very high, there is no job and to make matters worse, Customs duty has now been increased. It is a terrible situation we all are finding ourselves in now but with God all things are possible. We all need to learn how to adjust in every way we can to the situation of not only the duty but also in the country.
It is due to the exchange rate and it is not the Customs that is controlling the exchange rate, it is the Central Bank of Nigeria. If you submit a Form M to the bank, the bank will send the Form M to CBN and they will be the one to allocate and approve, then send approval to the bank and then back to Customs. Though it is affecting everyone at the port, as at today the present economic trend is globally affecting the whole world so there is nothing wrong if we all exercise patience, definitely there is going to be a change soon because there is no way we can contest anything with the government.
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