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Clearing agents caution govt on cargo pallet policy

Lucky Amiwero, President of National Council of Managing Directors of Licensed Customs Agents (NCMDLCA), and the Managing Director, Eyis Resources Limited

The National Council of Managing Directors of Licensed Customs Agents (NCMDLCA), has cautioned the Federal Government against new import guideline enforcing usage of pallets for Nigerian bound containerised cargoes.

The President, NCMDLCA, Lucky Amiwero, in a petition to the Ministry of Finance, said the mandatory enforcement of pallets on containerised goods will trigger cost of shipping, and reduce the number of imported consignment in palletised containers to Nigeria.

Amiwero said the new policy would also jeopardise the Ease of Doing Business, as the mandatory enforcement of pallets on containerised goods, will attract the presence of the plant quarantine officers in the port to Regulate the Implementation of International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC), with additional cost, which will increase the process and costs to importer/licensed customs agents.

According to him, the restriction in the use of pallets, in application by international community in shipment, is to reduce the carriage of invasive species of insets and plant disease into their economy.

He therefore recommended that government should rather look into repairing the broken down scanners to remove the mandatory provision of palletised goods in containers on Nigerian shipment, which is very costly, with mandatory international convention on shipment procedure that could delay and cause possible diversion of vessels out of Nigerian ports.

The Council also recommended the removal of shipment based on international shipping terms, which excluded palletised good from the requirement as detailed under: vehicles, equipment; homogenous goods, rice, chemicals, and other goods that is not of dangerous and fragile cargo.

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Amiwero also urged the government to reduce the cost and procedure by redrafting the circular to accommodate the above recommendations in line with international best practice.

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