NAGAFF Tin Can Appeals To CGC To Consider Urgent Meeting With Freight Forwarders

By: Joy Enamuna

The Tincan Island Port chapter of the National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF) has appealed to the Acting Comptroller-General of Nigeria Customs, Bashir Adewale Adeniyi, to consider an urgent town hall meeting with freight forwarders to enable him know, first-hand, the operational challenges they have been facing.

The chapter Chairman, Chief Emeka Paul Chiedozie made the appeal in Lagos, Thursday.

The town hall, he stated, will enable the CGC to hear suggestions and solutions from expert freight forwarders practising in the field. This will serve the Customs better than listening to those who sit in air-conditioned offices, using pen and paper to package petitions and recommendations.

He said: “CGC, please come and speak directly to practising freight forwarders that are generating the revenue. Let’s rub minds. For instance, the current charge for clearing one 40ft container from the port is almost more than what’s inside the container. This is frustrating”.

Chiedozie who is the Managing Director/ CEO of Seagold Ltd commended the Tin-can Island Port Customs Area Controller (CAC), Comptroller Adekunle Oloyede, for encouraging freight forwarders to look into exports business.

The commendation from NAGAFF is coming on the heels of the huge success the Command achieved by recording a total of 291,436.43 metric tonnes of exports in the first half of 2023.

Chiedozie was excited that within a few months the Federal Government lifted the embargo on exports cargoes, non-oil export has grown by 153,189.93 metric tonnes exported through Free- On -Board (FOB) in the first half of 2023 from the 138,246.5 metric tonnes recorded in the corresponding period last year.

He said that with the increasing rate at which bigger vessels now visit Tin Can Island port, the revenue generated from January to June 2023 by the Customs Command was not a surprise.

The goods exported through Tin Can Island Port Complex (TICPC) increased from 138,246.5 (MT) to 291,436.43 (MT), representing an increase of 110.8% when compared to 2022 report.

“I can remember few months ago, I encouraged my NAGAFF TinCan members to diversify into exports. Those who took advantage of that opportunity are smiling and thanking me today. Life is all about opportunities”.

“Freight forwarding business is meant for the professionals, those who are hardworking and know the technicalities involved in clearing. That’s why I encourage all my young NAGAFF chapter members to learn the job before running after money. With your job experience, a lot of people will see you as consultant, engage you each time they make mistakes during declaration.”

“During cargo declaration,” he advised, “don’t be too fast, ask questions, seek professional advice from any of the NAGAFF Executives or senior freight forwarders. My contact lines are available 24hrs so that you wouldn’t be losing your profit and cargoes to the Federal Government.”

Chiedozie, a veteran freight forwarder for decades, suggested some agricultural products that are exportable and lucrative. These include cocoa butter, cocoa beans, cashew nut and sesame seeds. Others are rubber, empty bottles, copper ingots and wood.

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