Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) Apapa Area Command, has generated N110.204 billion in the first quarter of the year.
The Customs Area Controller, Mohammed Abba-Kura, disclosed this in a statement in Lagos on Wednesday, by Mrs Nkeiruka Nwala, Deputy Superintendent of Customs and the Public Relations Officer of the command.
According to Abba-Kura, this indicates an appreciable increase of over 15.4 billion naira when compared to the corresponding period of 2019.
He added that the command collected 81.748 billion naira in the first quarter of 2018, and in the corresponding period of 2019 the Command recorded an appreciable increase in revenue to 94.717 billion naira.
“The year 2020 is surrounded with lots of challenges globally and Nigeria is not isolated from these challenges as critical sectors of the economy are adversely affected.
“However, for us in the Nigeria Customs Service, and in particular, the Apapa Area Command we remain resolute at ensuring that we collect the much needed revenue for the Federal Government and also ensure the safety and well being of the citizenry.
“This is through curtailing smuggling to its barest minimum while facilitating legitimate import and export trades.
“At the height of these challenges, the Apapa Area Command was able to beat its revenue generation records in the past two years i.e. 2018 and 2019 respectively by a huge margin,” he said.
Abba-Kura explained that the huge increase in revenue collection was a product of so many factors.
He said these factors include strict application of import guidelines, increased level of compliance by stakeholders and the service openness to address all complaints from importers promptly, among other measures.
He reminded stakeholders that in line with the Presidential directives, the Apapa Port remained open and their officers were on ground discharging their functions of collecting revenue and securing the nation’s sea ports against influx of prohibited goods.
The area controller further called on importers to use this opportunity and evacuate their consignments before normal activities resumed.
He noted that the command had recorded an appreciable increase in its anti-smuggling drive leading to the seizure of 80 containers and four vehicles.
Abba-Kura added that all the seized items contravened some of the provisions of extant laws as enshrined in the Customs and Excise Management Act (CEMA) CAP C45 LFN, 2004 as amended.
He said that the number of first quarter seizures in the Command almost equal the entire seizures of 2019 in terms of Duty Paid Value, which stood at 12.5 billion naira.
“Items seized in the first quarter includes; Rice, Used Clothes, Unregistered Drugs and Vegetable oil. other seized items include one exotic Rolls Royce car that was valued at over one hundred million naira.
“The Combined Duty Paid Value (DPV) of these items stood at about 12 billion naira,” he said.
Abba-Kura said that the Export Unit recorded another boost in the Command, stating that from a total of 51,601 metric tonnes of export in first quarter of 2019, it increased to 183,578 metric tonnes in corresponding period of 2020.
He said that furthermore, the Free on Board (FoB) value for the export in first quarter 2019 was $5,202,567.00, equivalent to N1,591,986,502.00.
The value grew to $72,442,394.00, equivalent to N22,167,372,564.00.
He said that the boost in exports was noticeable in Agriculture, Mineral Resources and Steel Bars among others.
Abba-Kura also reiterated the resolve of the service and the Apapa Area Command in particular to serving their stakeholders by way of discharging their duties with utmost diligence.
He also called on other stakeholders in the clearance chain to play their respective roles to move the nation forward especially at this trying times. He prays that the world overcomes the problem of Covid-19 soonest.