By Steve Agbota
The Nigeria Customs Service, Portharcourt Area ll Command Onne Port has collected a total of N115.264 billion from January to June 2022 and intercepted military wears, machetes without end user certificate and others.
The 2022 half year collection shows a remarkable difference from the N78 billion collected in the first half of 2021 and N46.6 billion collected in same period of 2020.
Further comparison indicates 147 per cent increase above the 2020 collection and 47 per cent increase above 2021 figure showing differences of
N37,097,079,630.91 and N68,597,503,002.82 for 2021 and 2020 respectively.
Under Comptroller Auwal Mohammed, the Customs Area Controller (CAC), the Command’s revenue collection showed upward progression on monthly basis resulting in the cumulative differences recorded for the three years juxtaposed.
In the first half of 2022, the Command made 28 seizures comprising of nine containers valued at N531,386,166.78 (Duty Paid Value), adding that this half year’s number of seizures is higher than 20 number made between January and June 2021.
According to him, amongst the seized items were machetes brought into the country without end user certificate, military wears, vegetable oil, whisky, soap and used clothing.
He said others seizures recorded include used tyres, foreign parboiled rice, tomato paste, used vehicle parts and other items either classified as prohibited or for which duty payment were being evaded.
On export, he hinted that a total of 876,775.60 metric tonnes with $495,384,221.99 free on board (FOB) value translating into N203,969,499,562.18 and Nigeria Export Supervision Scheme (NESS) value of N1, 075,060,914.52 were processed through the command in the period under review.
“The above export figures are over a 150 per cent increase in value to that of first half 2021. The 2022 export statistics shows an improvement on the 2021 figures, which is a fallout of CAC Auwal Mohammed trade facilitation strategies .
“Comparatively, as at June 2021,the command had processed 331,356.40 metric tonnes with free on board (FOB) value of $141,422,075.87. The FOB value in naira was N58,229,125,518.73 with NESS value of N260,150,300.13,” he added.
However, the CAC has brought to the knowledge of port users that there is a Domestic Export Warehouse (DEW) approved by Federal Government at Onne.
According to him, the DEW provides further opportunities for exporters to process and package their exports including packaging while enjoying the seamlessness of export cargo warehouse in Onne directly to vessels.
He said due diligence by regulatory and government agencies functions, including Customs examination shall be conducted in the DEW facility.
Mohammed described the DEW facility as a one stop shop emplaced by the Federal Government to promote and encourage export trade which the command has aligned with ahead of it’s full take off.
“This revenue, seizure and export figures coming at the end of first half of the year assets to a good outcome from our efforts. While thanking my officers and men for sticking to the vision of the Comptroller General of Customs,Col. Hameed Ibrahim Ali (Rtd.) and implementing the service mandate without compromise, I want to thank our compliant traders.
“Like I have always said in our parades with officers and meetings with stakeholders, there are numerous advantages attached to being compliant. It saves one, raises profit of traders by helping to prevent payment of demand notices and penalty payments by persons trying to cut corners and raises the integrity level of the port user in our profiling system for fast track plus other benefits.
“Compliant traders are our partners in progress. Indeed, we as a service in this Command will continue to lawfully support them. It is also expedient to appreciate other agencies of government for their cooperation, intelligence sharing and camaraderie in implementing government policies to enhance national security and economic interests,” he said.
He urged all officers of the Command to brace up to better performance in the second half of this year and together, let’s achieve outstanding results in all its functions.