Nigeria Customs is principally responsible for two-way goods clearance in Nigeria. Goods going out of Nigeria undergo export clearance, while goods coming into Nigeria are subject to import clearance. In my article for electronic customs clearance, we did mention that we would update our readers as things evolve.
Therefore, the purpose of this piece of information is to let our friends and visitors know what is new in the electronic direction.
NIGERIA CUSTOMS GOING DIGITAL ON GOODS CLEARANCE?
On 25 November 2021, the Comptroller General of Nigeria Customs through his PRO, Comptroller Joseph Attah announced the introduction of Webb Tracker Mobile Application. Could this be the long awaited digital revolution of the Customs service? What is the purpose of web tracker mobile application? How can industry players gain access to mobile app? The answers to these questions were provided by the service PRO himself.
Read Also; IMPORTATION OF GOODS: NEW IMPORTER’S GUIDE
WEB TRACKER MOBILE APPLICATION
As seen from the name, the Tracker is a mobile app, which means it is installable on mobile devices. According to Comptroller Joseph, the following are functions and benefits of the mobile software.
- The mobile app would enable stakeholders to validate remotely any declaration/payment and more importantly the status of a particular consignment/vehicle.
- Web Tracker will eliminate encumbrances currently experienced by international trade actors in Nigeria.
- The app will reduce the waiting time by Motorists and importers when stopped by field Customs officers.
- This mobile app enables the use of the vehicle identification number to upload data concerning type, make and model of all vehicles at the point of making declaration. Thus, the upload will help in assigning value for the payment of appropriate Customs duty.
- “On the road, Customs field operatives using this mobile application will be able to, in real-time, validate any Customs declaration. The Vehicle Identification number (VIN) and the Customs control numbers will help to ascertain the correct status of vehicles and other containerized goods released or in transit.”
- “This apart from removing acrimonies associated with enforcement activities on the highways will robustly facilitate free flow of compliant trade while checking illegal imports.”
NIGERIA CUSTOMS AND THE OPERATION OF WEB TRACKER MOBILE APPLICATION
- Firstly, the new device would ensure that all containers are Pre-Scanned as soon as they are discharged from the vessel;
- Secondly, the declarant makes Declaration, Assessment and Payment, while NICIS II Risk Engine allocates scanned containers to designated Image Analyst.
- Thus, Customs Control would then release Compliant Containers, with such released containers acknowledged and exited through the gate.
- Lastly, at the end of each day, Customs would forward a list of suspected non-compliant containers to the Terminal Operator, who would position them for physical examination on the request of the Declarant.
Effective trade facilitation, prompts the Nigeria Customs Service to introduce the Webb Tracker Mobile Application and a simplified standard operating procedure for the use of Scanners. In addition, the simplified standard operating procedure provide clear guidelines on the use of scanners at entry or exit points in Nigeria ports. This certainly is a milestone towards digital goods clearance if you ask me. Thank you for taking some time to read this piece. Feel free to contact us for hassle-free customs process. We are into all things in the chain, from consultation on best shipping route to documentation and clearance.