maritime Transport

Customs mulls releasing detained vehicles over forex crisis

The Federal Government has announced a 90-day window to regularise import duties on specific categories of vehicles.
The National Public Relations Officer of the Nigeria Customs Service, Abdullahi Maiwada, disclosed this in a statement on Sunday.
The development came amid rising number of detained vehicles as foreign exchange crisis continues to make payment of import duties payment difficult for importers and firms.
Maiwada said that the latest development was a proactive move to enhance compliance and streamline import processes.
Recall that the NCS in February said it intended to grant waivers to vehicle owners to pay duties within a specific time frame to avoid sanctions.
Speaking further, Maiwada added that the initiative applies solely to vehicles imported into Nigeria where the requisite customs duty had not been fulfilled or vehicles detained due to under-valuation.
“In a proactive move to enhance compliance and streamline import processes, the NCS, under the directive of the Honourable Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Economy, is pleased to announce a 90-day window for regularising import duties on specific categories of vehicles,” he said.
He said that 25 per cent penalty would be paid.
“Valuation and assessment of the vehicles would be carried out using the Vehicles Identification Number valuation method. Import duty and a 25 per cent penalty shall be paid in tandem with the import guidelines, procedures, and documentation requirements for used vehicles under the Destination Inspection Scheme in Nigeria (2013) and the NCS Act 2023. Also, duty payments must be made using the procedure code specifically created for this exercise,” Maiwada said.
Maiwada explained that vehicles seized and condemned would not be released.
He said, “While we strive for inclusivity, it is important to clarify that vehicles seized and condemned will not be released under this arrangement and shall be forfeited to the Federal Government in accordance with extant regulations.”
He added, “All vehicle owners, importers/agents seeking to regularize import duties on their vehicles are required to apply to the service’s zonal coordinators (Zones A, B, C, D) and Customs Area Controller of the Federal Capital Territory Command”
“They must submit the necessary available documents and process V-reg in line with the Federal Ministry of Finance directives for the registration of imported motor vehicles.”
Maiwada said that the initiative reflects the service’s unwavering commitment to facilitating compliance. We encourage all stakeholders to capitalize on this opportunity within the stipulated timeframe.

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