By Anthony Nwachukwu
The Apapa Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) said it generated N78.4 billion in the month of June, an increase of over 90 per cent over the N42.4 billion for the corresponding month last year.
That sum, a record achievement in the history of the command, also brought the command’s half-year revenue from January to June 2021 to N366 billion, representing 61 per cent increase over the N227 billion collected in the first half of 2020.
Briefing the media on the command’s revenue collection, anti-smuggling operations and trade facilitation for the periods under review, Compt. Yusuf Malanta Ibrahim said its “sustained anti-smuggling campaign and increased (trade) compliance level have resulted in reduction of smuggling activities throughout the command.”
According to him, “only 10 seizures of various contraband goods such as tomato paste, used clothing and unregistered pharmaceutical drugs, among others, with Duty Paid Value of N442 million, was made in the period under review.
This validated “our new approach to revenue drive. It is also fitting to emphasise here that this volume of revenue has never been recorded in the history of the flagship command of the Nigeria Customs Service.”
Consequently, “and in line with extant laws, trade guidelines and enforcement of the government fiscal policy, the command was able to strengthen its anti-smuggling operations against economic saboteurs through timely and credible intelligence-driven network, which led to the seizure of 46 containers between January and June 21, with DPV of N27.6 billion.
“All these importations were contrary to sections 46 and 47 of the Customs and Excise Management Act CAP C45 LFN 2004 and Customs and Excise Notices No.1491.
“It is also worthy to note that the command generated a total of N366 billion for the half year, representing 61 per cent increase compared to the N227 billion collected in the first half of 2020.”
Meanwhile, the command facilitated the export of goods worth N272.3 billion through the Apapa Port in the half-year ending June 21, 2021. These comprised “agricultural goods such as sesame seed, ginger, hibiscus flower and other mineral resources,” he disclosed.
“The total tonnage of the said export stood at 1.6 million tones, with Free on Board (FOB) value of $103 billion.
On this note, I urge all importers, exporters, customs brokers and freight forwarders to imbibe the culture of compliance as part of their standard operating procedure because it will reduce the time and cost of doing business.”