The Apapa Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has facilitated exports worth over $159million and collected N212.5billion revenue in the first quarter of 2023.
Area Controller of the Command, Comptroller Auwal Mohammed disclosed this while briefing journalists on the Command’s scorecard in the last three months.
Exports from the Apapa ports included agricultural produce such as sesame seeds, ginger, hibiscus, mineral resources, steel ingot and others with Free on Board (FOB) value of $159,845,232.84.
Comptroller Mohammed noted that the exported items included processed wood worth N70 billion with a total tonnage of 110,448 metric tonnes.
Mohammed, however, expressed optimism that with the elections over, the Command is best positioned to meet and surpass its annual target of N1.5 trillion.
His words: “The volume of importation is low compared to last year because of the elections but very soon as the elections are over, normal activities will resume. But we are within limit with what we have at hand, we have collected and generated maximum revenue on behalf of the government.”
“Our scanning machine is also working effectively, scanning up to 130 containers on a daily basis. So, we are doing our best and we’ll make sure that as soon as activities resume, the volume of cargo traffic will increase and revenue generation will be maximized.”
Speaking on anti-smuggling activities, Comptroller Mohammed revealed that the Command made seizures of 14 containers comprising prohibited items such as vegetable oil, footwears, used clothing, unprocessed wood, and tramadol tablets with a Duty Paid Value of N22billion.
He added that the command on Friday, 31 March 2023 uncovered a large quantity of 225mg of tramadol tablets concealed in 2x40ft container numbers TRHU 4758549 and TRHU 6936803 where 143,800,000 tablets of Tramadol 225mg were discovered in 720 cartons weighing 10.3 tonnes (10,386kg).
The consignment which originated from India, the Customs boss said is valued at N21.6billion.
“We are on the look-out for those behind such unlawful importation for arrest and very soon we will track them down to face the full wrath of the law. As a service, we owe Nigerians the duty to prevent this kind of importation from entering the market to safeguard the health of the citizenry,” he said.
The Customs boss harped on effective collaboration with stakeholders and sharing credible intelligence with sister government agencies in the port have yielded positive results in the command’s effort to enforce government fiscal policies on import and export.
“Our resolve to enforce government fiscal policies and extant laws to ensure that all import and export consignments transiting through Apapa port are duly examined has been strengthened through effective collaboration and timely sharing of credible intelligence with sister government agencies in the port,” the Customs boss added.