The acting National President of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents, Kayode Farinto, has lamented that foreigners have taken over 90 per cent of freight forwarding jobs in Nigeria.
He also said that the association had drafted a bill through its legal adviser on the need to indigenise Nigeria Customs Service brokerage.
Farinto, who spoke on Thursday at the National Executive Council meeting of ANLCA, noted that the nucleus of freight forwarding should be left to Nigerians.
“Foreigners have taken over 90 per cent of our jobs by practising door-to-door services or allowing non-functional Nigerians to be directors in their companies. We have got lawyers and put up a bill on the need to indigenise Customs’ brokerage, which is a nucleus of freight forwarding, to be left for Nigerians alone.”
Farinto, who accused Egyptians, Lebanese and Chinese of taking over the freight forwarding industry in Nigeria, also said that NCS was given these nationals preference over Nigerians.
“The issue of foreigners taking over clearing jobs is a keg of gunpowder and if nothing is done about it, we will all have ourselves to blame. We are, however, setting up a committee which will give a proper guideline.”
Speaking on the recently introduced 15 per cent National Automotive Council levy on imported vehicles, he said that the Council for the Regulations of Freight Forwarding had directed the registrar to engage the Federal Ministry of Finance on the issue.
According to him, the mandate given to the registrar was to ensure the suspension of the NAC levy.
“The Acts No 6 of 2014 is very explicit on the introduction of NAC levy on fully-built Imported vehicles. We woke up to see that the Federal Government had migrated to the Economic Community of West African States Tariff, which states that the duty for raw materials should be 5 per cent; semi-finished products, 10 per cent, while used vehicles should attract 20 per cent.
“We are not unaware of the provision, which empowers member nations to introduce Import Adjustment Tax but this ought to be for commodities, products manufactured locally. This tax is meant to protect local manufacturers.
“The question, which is yet to be answered is whether the Nigerian government is manufacturing used vehicles locally. The spiral effect of this levy is unprecedented as cost of clearing of used vehicles has skyrocketed and its spiral effect will begin to manifest in the next quarter of 2022,” he said.