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Presentation on theme: "SYMPOSIUM ON WTO TRADE FACILITATION FOR AFRICAN COUNTRIES, NAIROBI, KENYA NOVEMBER 13 - 15, 2012 Best Practices in Trade Facilitation: Nigeria Customs."— Presentation transcript:

NOVEMBER , 2012 Best Practices in Trade Facilitation: Nigeria Customs Service Experience Paper delivered by; Taju Olanrewaju Comptroller of Customs, Headquarters, Abuja

How long the measures have been in place Benefits Issues in Implementation How the issues were overcome Recommendations 3. CONCLUDING REMARKS

3 1. Introduction Ongoing reform and modernization in the Nigeria Customs Service [NCS] is guided by best practices in trade facilitation towards speedy clearance of cargo at the border. NCS actively participates in the ongoing Trade Facilitation [TF] textual negotiations at the WTO and is currently implementing some of the TF measures under negotiations by the WTO Negotiating Group on Trade Facilitation [NGTF].

4 2.0 TF Measures Under Implementation In Nigeria
Relevant Articles: Draft Consolidated Negotiating Text No. TN/TF/W/165/Rev.13 of 17 Oct. 2012; Articles 1 and 7. 2.0.1a. Proposals under Article 1: Publication and Availability of Information, focusing on internet publication. 2.0.1b Proposals under Article 7: Release and Clearance of Goods, focusing on Pre-arrival processing, Separating release from clearance procedures, Risk management for Customs control.

5 2.1 . Details of TF Measures under implementation:
2.1.a. Internet Publication: Article 1.1 requires information to be published “in order to enable governments, traders and other interested parties to become acquainted with them.” NCS maintains a website; that provides information on importation, exportation, transit procedures, and other vital information to guide parties intending to transact international trade with Nigeria. How long has the measure been under implementation? – The NCS website has been functional since 2008.

6 Benefits: - Transparency and increased access to information on customs procedures – first step in trade facilitation - Improved compliance to rules. - Enhanced trade facilitation. Issues in implementation: -Infrastructure, including equipments. - Information management system. -Updating information on the website. How the issues were overcome: Provided infrastructure. Enhanced capacity to update by Public Relations unit. -Technical support by Webb Fontaine company managing NCS ICT system.

7 Recommendation Implementation requires a strong ICT policy including technical assistance and financial support, particularly the challenge is real in updating information. 2.1b Pre-arrival processing: Article of the negotiating text requires Members to “provide for advance lodging of documents in electronic format for pre-arrival processing of such documents.” NCS allows pre-arrival processing through submission of advanced manifest by shipping companies, electronic declaration and e-payment by traders. How long has the measure been under implementation?: NCS commenced implementation by 2009.

8 Benefits: - Enhanced speedy clearance of cargo through online submission of declaration, e-payment and e-release of compliant cargo. - Increased revenue through more efficient service. - Enhanced custom and security control through advance manifest. - Promotes application of risk assessment and low dwell time. Issues in implementation: -Legal framework supporting electronic operations. -Stakeholders understanding of process. -Limited skill in computerization by operatives and operators. How the issues were overcome: - Sought legal framework. - Consulted stakeholders and organized awareness workshops. - Capacity building in ICT for operators and operatives.

9 Recommendation: This measure is critical to trade facilitation and most enhanced through automation, also requires high compliance by operators. 2.1c Separating release from clearance procedures: Article 7.2 proposes that Members adopt procedures, which allow release of goods prior to final determination and payment of customs duties and taxies upon provision of sufficient guarantee. NCS allows release of goods prior to the payment of duties and taxies pending final classification of goods, assessment of value and other pending transactions having secured guarantee. How long?: Electronic implementation commenced in 2009 Benefits: -Speedy clearance of cargo -Timely delivery of goods to the traders’ premises -Reduces cost of warehousing

10 Issues in implementation:
-Trust between Customs and trading community. -Security for payment. -Training of operatives and operators. How the issues were overcome: -Built trust in Customs trading community relations. -Established a guarantee system that allows use of variety instruments like bank guarantees, bonds, and cash deposits. -Trained operatives and operators, and simplified procedures. Recommendation: A reliable and simplified security system will facilitate implementation of this measure.

11 2. 1d. Risk Management: Art 7. 3. 1 seeks Members to apply risk
2.1d. Risk Management: Art seeks Members to apply risk management to Customs control in connection with importations, exportations and transit. NCS electronics simplified clearance procedures enable application of risk management information to determine the level of scrutiny NCS will accord a consignment. Four possible risk outcomes are;

. Go to Terminal Operator Go to CPC RB GREEN: YELLOW: RED: Go to Examination Area BLUE Consignment is released. may conduct documentary post clearance audit check in future. Consignment is released automatically. Documentary check at Customs Processing Centre (CPC) and if the officer is satisfied otherwise the cargo is routed for physical examination. Scanning or physical Examination and if the examination officer is satisfied the Cargo is released, otherwise reassessed.

13 How long has the measure been in place? Since 2006.
Benefits: - Enhanced revenue through improved efficiency and professionalism. - Helps towards improved compliance because of transparent analysis of risk element. - More efficient use of human resources as a result of application of risk assessment that isolates high risk goods from low risk goods. -Better understanding between Customs and the trading community flowing from enhanced service delivery reducing transaction time. Issues in implementation: - Understanding the process by operatives and operators - Creating a specialized unit to drive the process - Selectivity criteria

14 How the issues were overcome:
- Awareness programs to sensitize the operatives and the operators. - Trained personnel in risk assessment and established a Risk Management Unit [RMU] to drive the process. - Continuous assessment of risk parameter. Recommendation: Successful implementation may require technical assistance to train and establish a risk management unit.

15 3. Concluding Remarks: Positive impact of TF measures depends on the following;
Effective combination of various trade facilitation measures, including automation. Efficient application of risk assessment in support of post clearance audit, fast track procedure, pre-arrival processing and others. Compliance level by operators. Fiscal and trade policies that support compliance. THANK YOU ALL.

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