Clearing agents under the aegis of the National Council of Managing Director of Licensed Customs Agents (NCMDLCA), have told President Muhammadu Buhari that there is no provision for the National Automotive Council (NAC) levy of 15 per cent in either the 2020 or 2021 Finance Act, stressing that its implementation by the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) is illegal.
President of NCMDLCA, Mr Lucky Amiwero, who stated the position of these agents in a letter to Buhari, also argued that the NAC levy was not part of the the10-year implementation plan of the National Automotive Industry Development Plan (NAIDP) approved by the Federal Executive Council (FEC) on October 2, 2013, which is expected to expire in 2023.
Amiwero, who was also a member of the presidential committee on the review of customs laws, therefore, called for a review of the auto policy.
According to him, the Finance Act 2020 specifically approves for motor vehicles the amendment of the First Schedule to the Act, which is amended by inserting and replacing duties and levies.
He said: "Duty on Tractors (Heading 8701) from 35 per cent to five per cent; duty on motor vehicles for the transportation of more than 10 persons (HS Heading 8702) from 35 per cent to 10 per cent; levy on motor vehicles for transportation of persons (cars) (HS Headings 8703) from 35 per cent to five per cent and duty for motor vehicles for transportation of goods (HS Heading 8704) from 35 per cent to 10 per cent".
"Finance Act provides for five per cent levy for Motor vehicles of Chapter 8703, that is cars; there is no provision for NAC levy of 15 per cent in either 2020 and 2021 Finance Act passed by the National Assembly and signed in to law.
"NAC levy was not part of the 10-year implementation plan of NAIDP approved by the Federal Executive Council (FEC) on October 2, 2013, which is expected to expire in 2023 and never being included in the process of duty assessment and levies.
Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC) Act Section subsection 1(a) specifies two per cent as collection and not part of the Finance Act 2020 and 2021, which was referred to in the circular by the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS)
"But with the collapse of the auto policy in 2021 and the removal of the protective regime of duties and levies, there is the need for a total review to ascertain the possible shortfall within the seven years of the implementation of the auto policy," he stated.