Maritime

PTML Customs Command Generates  N132billion In Export Trade In 2021* As Revenue Grow To NN224.5billion

Comptroller Festus Okun

BY NKECHI NAECHE-ESEZOBOR–The Ports and Terminal Multiservices Limited (PTML) Command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) said it’s Command handled export goods worth over N132,451billion at the end of 2021.

Speaking at a press briefing in Lagos on Wednesday, Controller of the Command, Comptroller Festus Okun, said it handled export goods with a total tonnage of about 199,487 metric tons in the year under review.

On revenue, he said  “Year 2021 was a successful year considering our accomplishments in the discharge of our service core mandates of revenue generation, facilitation of legitimate trade, anti-smuggling activities and ensuring national security.”

According to him, the command generated over N224.5billion revenue in 2021, representing an increase of 19 percent compared to the revenue of N189.3billion generated in 2020.

This he said represents about 94% of the revenue target of over N 238,224billion set for 2020 adopted by the Command in 2021.

This, represents increase of over N35,122 billion, when compared with the total revenue generated in the previous year of 2020, which was N189,347,565billion.

In the area of anti-smuggling activities, the Command said it made some seizures which  comprised of four containers  (3x40ft & 1x20ft) which were found to contain bags of rice, vegetable oil, drinks, vehicles, pharmaceutical product and among others with a duty paid value of over N55,529million.

The seizures he said were effected because the importations were done in contravention of extant laws. Vegetable oil is listed under Schedule III of the Common External Tariff (CET) Prohibition (Trade).

Comptroller Okun said the command under his watch enjoys a very robust relationship among the various government agencies operating in the command including the Nigeria Police, NDLEA, NAFDAC, SON, NESREA.

“We have effectively functioned as the lead agency towards “ease of doing business” in the port. This has greatly contributed to the efficiency in service delivery.

“The Command has continued to maintain a cordial relationship with the various stakeholders like importers, exporters, licensed customs agents, freight forwarders and others. Regular meetings were held with our critical stakeholders where issues affecting various segments of the supply chain were well discussed and solutions proffered. Furthermore, the forum served as a platform through which compliance was being preached and feedback received. Through these engagements, we were able to operate in an atmosphere that was conducive for trade and accomplishment of our Service goals,” he said.

The Customs boss, however, identified the poor state of the access roads to the port and the accompanying gridlock as part of the challenges faced by the command in the outgone year.

This, he said, impacted negatively on the turn-around time for the movement of cargo outside the port and movement of export cargo into the port.

“Furthermore, movements of officers and other stakeholders were largely affected, leading to loss of man hour. Also, there were cases of our personnel being involved in avoidable accidents.

“However, we must state that we benefited from the improvement in the area of port access roads when compared with the previous year.

“Another challenge we had during the year was the volatile nature of our environment. However, with effective stakeholder engagement, we were able to control the situation and sustain the relative peace we have been enjoying.

“Another area of challenge is the issue of 100 percent physical examination of containerized cargo. This is due to the absence of scanners in the port. We are hoping that this will soon be a thing of the past once the e-Customs project is fully implemented,” he said.

The Customs boss said in spite of the challenges faced in the outgone 2021, it was a successful year for the command, having been able to improve on its performances in the year when compared with the previous year, 2020.

“As regularly done, we have conducted our “SWOT Analysis,” and mapped out strategies to build on the successes recorded in the year 2021. We will build and improve on our areas of strength, work on weaknesses identified, take our opportunities right from the low hanging to the challenging ones and put measures in place to deal with the threats.

“By doing so, we forecast a better performance in the year 2022. Moving forward, our projections for the year 2022 is to be able to consolidate on the gains of the year past (2021) in the areas of faithful and effective implementation of government fiscal policies, raising the level of compliance by all critical stakeholders in the supply- chain.

“At this juncture, as a command, we want to express our deep appreciation to the Comptroller General of Customs, Col. Hameed Ibrahim Ali (Rtd) and his entire management team for the support we have enjoyed, their inspiring leadership, giving us direction and guiding us aright.

“We also want to appreciate him for the additional operational vehicles we received during the year under review. And this has greatly impacted our operations positively,” he concluded.

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