16 January 2014

Nigeria: Auto Policy - FG Plans Gradual Hike in Vehicle Import Duties

Indications have emerged that the federal government may review the new National Automotive Policy, with plans to adopt a phased increase in vehicle import duties instead of the one-off hike of the tariffs by 50 per cent, which it announced in November last year.

LEADERSHIP's investigation showed that the federal government is considering a gradual increase of the vehicle import tariff over a period of 10 years after which it would totally phase out importation of used cars. The new rate which is expected to become effective in two weeks time, is however not yet disclosed by government.

The National President of the Association of Nigerian Licenced Customs Agents (ANLCA), Prince Olayiwola Shittu, also dropped the hint when he informed the a meeting of licenced clearing agents in Port Harcourt on yesterday that based on the interaction between ANLCA and federal government representatives, "the contentious automotive policy is to be revisited with a view to reversing the policy in favour of a phased increase in the tariff regime over a period of 10 years. This is to be carried out within the next two weeks."

The agents at the meeting also discussed the issue of the new Pre-Arrival Assessment Report (PAAR), with the national president taking time to explain the PAAR scheme, while encouraging them that in spite of the hitches being experienced with the take-off of its implementation, the systems remained the best option to facilitate trade through the ports. He said that with the joint instrumentality of the Customs trade hub, the CET (Common External Tariff) and explanatory notes, proper classification of imported items can be accurately established.

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