From Uche Usim, Abuja
As nations prepare for the take off of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCTA), the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) on Tuesday said it was waiting for the National Action Committee (NAC) to release the list of duties and charges waived for liberalized goods under the scheme.
It is also awaiting the list of the 90% liberalized National Trade Offers, list of 70% Non-liberalized exclusive goods at the regional level and the list of 3% Non-Liberalized sensitive goods.
The Public Relations Officer of Customs, Joseph Attah, who stated this in a statement, also revealed that the Service was awaiting the appointment of a competent Authority responsible for issuing and authenticating certificates of origin and registering enterprises and products within the region.
“NCS acknowledges the transformational impact this agreement portends for businesses within the continent in general and Nigeria in particular and are fully committed to its success.
“Further, the Service recommends that each member country should have a representative in the continental Chamber of Commerce to ensure transparency within the body thereby generating confidence in the system. This in our view should be complementary to the activities of the various Chambers of Commerce of each country in the region.
“While awaiting clear directives concerning tariffs for all goods covered by this agreement, we want to assure the public of our preparedness to fully deploy our services at the shortest notice. Our desire is to imbue trust in the system while guaranteeing the economic safety and wellbeing of businesses within the country.
“We look with optimism to an era of complete economic integration which will lead to growth and prosperity for businesses within the region”, Attah stated.
He added that the aforementioned steps were being taken to guarantee smooth and full implementation of AfCTA, rather than proceeding in a chaotic fashion.