Lagos, Nov. 3, 2023: The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) Lilypond Export Command, has facilitated the exportation of 12,438 containers with a Free On Board value of $518.69 million between January and September 2023.
The Customs Area Controller, Comptroller Ajibola Odusanya, said in a statement on Thursday in Lagos and described the command as a one-stop shop for export business, saying that the current government policy in Nigeria requires zero duty payment for export.
“Exporters don’t pay export duties, except on special occasions where goods that were otherwise imported and are being re-exported. They pay 2.5 per cent levy on the current value of the goods with the government’s permission,” he said.
Odusanya gave a data analysis of exports the command had facilitated within the last one year.
“From January to the end of September, the command has facilitated the export of 12,438 export containers. If you break them down, we have 6524 × 20-foot containers and 5914 × 40-foot containers with a FOB value of $518,690,852.93.
“For the goods, we have agricultural produce such as cocoa, cashew, soya, ginger, hibiscus flower (zobo leaves), cotton, sesame seeds and others.
“Also are locally manufactured goods like cigarettes, cosmetic items, beverages and solid minerals such as aluminium, copper, magnesium, lithium and zinc.
“We have other sundry commodities like foodstuff, personal effects and others,” he said.
Also, Maritime Union Chairman, Lilypond Export Terminal-unit, Mr Augustine Umunnakwe, said the command was efficient in terms of work but it had challenges with shipping companies because of less manpower.
The Head of Processing, Diamond Star Port and Terminal Ltd., Mr Abdulsalam Babtunde, said that as an export processing terminal, there was a strong relationship and collaboration with the shipping lines and government agencies.
“We facilitate the processing at the port; we work with the major shipping lines and the terminal; we confirm the bookings to ensure that whatever leaves this terminal goes directly to the vessel; we ensure their quality and their quantity.
“We do not do it alone. We work with Nigerian Ports Authority and Customs Service as well and make sure that we do not export anything that has not been duly released by Customs,” Babatunde said.
Mr Emmanuel Ekle, the Principal Trade Promotion Officer at Nigeria Export Promotion Council (NEPC) Southwest, said that registration for exporters was a seamless process that was done online.