Hameed Ali
Customs DG, Hameed Ali

Controller General of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) Hameed Ali, has said the service has received directive from the ministry of finance, budget and national planning, to implement the reduced import levy on vehicles.

Ali told NAN on Sunday that implementation will begin before the end of February.

The Customs DG had said the NCS was awaiting directives from the ministry on the implementation of the finance act which provides for a reduction in import levy for cars.

President Muhammadu Buhari signed the Finance Bill, 2020 into law on December 31, 2020, stipulating downward review of excise duty on tractors and motor vehicles for transportation.

“The act has been transmitted to us. We received the minister’s mandate this week, to start working on it, although we have to develop certain regulations and measures on how we intend to implement the law,” Ali said.

“We have to change our codes to fit into the new law. You know that commercial vehicles levy is the only levy that has been reduced from 35 percent to five percent.

“So we have to change the codes to fit into the new law and we hope we’ll finish that in two days and the minister will have to look at it and agree that yes that is what we should do.

“I hope not too long from now, by next week or next two weeks, this law will come into effect. We will circulate it to our own commands to begin to operate.”

The customs boss said the new law would help the country to have vehicles meant for transportation with reduced duty for the benefit of Nigerians.

He noted that the high duty paid had also resulted to increased smuggling of vehicles into the country.

Ali disclosed that statistics available to the service showed that about 300,000 to 400,000 vehicles coming into Nigeria first stop in Benin Republic before being smuggled into Nigeria.