The Managing Director, Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Mohammed Bello-Koko says three out of the 10 export processing terminals created by NPA would come on stream shortly.
Bello-Koko, however, charged both Nigeria Customs Service and Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) to establish export desks at the export processing terminals to boost cargo clearance.
He stated this at the 2022 Zenith Bank International Trade Seminar on non-oil export, with the theme: “Unlocking Opportunities in Nigeria’s Non-Oil Export Business,” Bello-Koko said that there should be proper synergy between vessels that come into the country as well records of the ones that leave the ports.
He said the authority had deployed a truck electronic call-up system to ease the movement of cargoes into the port.
Bello-Koko added that the NPA had created pre-gates where trucks would park before entering the port.
“We are working with the government to ensure diversification of the economy and we are encouraging non-oil export. Also, not just about deploying the e-call-up system, we have licensed 10 export processing terminals.
“The terminals are supposed to be at locations whereby one stalk, process, package, certify, seal and send it directly to the port.
“But for it to succeed, we need other government agencies. We need to understand that the port is a maritime ecosystem not just for the NPA but other government agencies.
“And so for the export processing terminals that were created, we expect the Nigeria Customs Service and Standards Organisation of Nigeria to have export desk there for certification,” he said.
Bello-Koko noted that barges were also introduced at a cost borne by the exporters thereby making export more expensive.
He explained that the export terminal would reduce the burden in future.
He also called for the introduction of a National Single Window to ease the movement of cargoes in the country.
“Automation is key to reducing congestion and will ensure quick processing of export and import documentations.
“In the documentation, whether import or export, all starts with the consignee and the form is Form M and this has to do with port destination, loading and discharging.
“So, there is a need to have one form that serves everybody and that is the National Single Window where all transactions will be done, even payment.
“One bulk payment can be made and everybody is paid separately at the same time. This is obtainable in other neighbouring African countries and I believe we can do so here,” he said.