- Customs Targets N900bn Revenue
The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) is focusing on a revenue target of between N700 and N900 billion for the 2017 fiscal year even as it justified the recent ban on vehicle imports through land borders.
The service said the ban was aimed at checkmating the smuggling of arms and ammunition which it said, were concealed in vehicles and ferried into the country.
NCS’ Comptroller-General, Col. Hammed Ali (rtd), who spoke in Abuja during this year’s World Customs Day (WCO) with the theme: ‘Data Analysis for Effective Border Management,’ said majority of arms and ammunition in the country were smuggled through vehicles imported through the land borders.
According to him, besides the primary motive of using the ban as a means of boosting the nation’s economy, another major reason was the need to curb smuggling of arms concealed inside imported vehicles through land borders.
“In terms of what we have achieved so far with the ban on vehicles, we are just 26 days on it today . It will take time to really get this thing driven to our stakeholders . But the actual fight is; we want to boost the economy of this great nation by bringing back those monies that are exiting this country and most especially we want to tackle the security of this great country.
“We discovered that it is through the importation of these cars that most people smuggle their arms and ammunition. They squeezed them in to these cars and drive into the country. That was why we have proliferation of arms in this country and we can’t allow that to continue.
“Apart from economic aspect of it, security is also a fundamental aspect of it,” he said.
On revenue targets, Ali said the Service generated N898 billion from the N937 billion target set for it last year, adding that gir 2017, “we are looking at between N700 – N900 billion.”
The budget, he said, “has not been finalised. Until the budget is finalised, we will get the final approval.”
On the 2016 revenue, he said: “We never had N1trillion, it was N937 billion. We got N898 billion.
“We are a little bit short but if you appreciate the trading volume you will know that the Nigeria Custom has done extremely well.”
On the 2017 Customs’ Day celebration, a day set aside by the World Customs Organisation to celebrate Customs worldwide, he said the event equals independence celebration of any country.