The Comptroller General of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Mr Kayode Adeniyi has refuted claims that the service is involved in arbitrary fixing of foreign exchange rates for cargo clearance.
He said the NCS only uses the exchange rate on the official CBN window for clearing goods and would not engage in arbitrary increase or decrease in such rate.
Adeniyi, who made this known in an interview on Arise TV, explained that the policy of merging the multiple exchange rate windows has had repercussions on the operations of the NCS.
He clarified that the Nigeria Customs does not independently fix its exchange rate for goods clearance but just updates its system based on what is on the Central Bank’s official window.
“The new administration has not made any pretension towards the fact that it was going to take several bold decisions and reforms aimed at repositioning the Nigerian economy and bringing sustainable change over a long period.
“One of the reforms that have been undertaken is the merger of the various sectors of the forex market.
“This has repercussions on our operations…What we do is just to update our system and follow what is prescribed for us by the regulatory authority for monetary affairs, which is the Central Bank of Nigeria,” he explained.
“It is not about customs increasing the rates. We have nothing to do with whether the rates go up or come down. We follow what is prescribed for us by the regulatory authority for monetary affairs which is the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN),” Adeniyi added.
He said the NCS would adhere to the fiscal policies of the administration concerning import and export duties, specifically the removal of 7.5 per cent VAT on LPG equipment imports and the removal of VAT on steel and Electric vehicle imports into the country.
The Comptroller General also noted that the duties of the Customs Service go beyond revenue generation but trade facilitation and NCS hopes to leverage the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCTA) to improve trade between African countries which coincidentally leads to more revenue generation.
However, he noted that the Customs Service has increased its revenues by 37 per cent since he assumed office and has set a target of N5.1 trillion in revenues for 2024.