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Import Duties Frustrate Car Imports, Fuels Smuggling – NPA

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  • Import Duties Frustrate Car Imports, Fuels Smuggling – NPA

Duties on car imports aimed at boosting local production have reduced the number of vehicles brought into the country this year by a quarter, fuelling smuggling from neighbouring Benin, the Nigerian Ports Authority has said.

Car imports fell to 70,453 units in the first 10 months of this year, a 26.8 per cent reduction on the same period of 2016, Reuters said, quoting the NPA figures.

The government imposed a 70 per cent tariff on imported vehicles in December 2015 as part of attempts by the Federal Government to stimulate local production.

Before that, the tariff was 22 per cent. The Managing Director, NPA, Hadiza Usman, said the policy meant local demand for cars was not being met.

“We appreciate the need for the government to have assembly plants and manufacturing firms in Nigeria but we are concerned that the capacity of the Nigerian market is beyond what is said to be assembled in Nigeria,” the NPA boss explained.

“We have seen a lot of cars being smuggled through neighbouring countries – mainly from Benin,” she added. Benin maintains low import tariffs compared to Nigeria, which for years has been beset by chronic congestion in its ports.

Vehicle imports fell to 96,222 units last year from 131,994 in 2015, according to port figures.

Usman said the ports authority expected a further drop in 2018 to 67,400 units.

The tariffs imposed in 2015 attracted United States car maker, Ford , South Korea’s Kia Motors and Germany’s Volkswagen, which announced plans the same year to set up assembly plants in Nigeria.

But activity slowed soon afterwards as the economy slid into recession in 2016 due to low oil prices and a currency crisis.

Although Nigeria emerged from recession in the second quarter of this year, growth is fragile and limited financing for new cars has stunted sales.

Ford’s local partner said it assembled 739 units of its Ranger pickup in 2016 and this year. Its plant in Nigeria’s commercial capital, Lagos, can assemble 5,000 cars annually.

Kia Motors, which has a plant in Lagos with a 20,000 vehicle capacity, said it assembled 1,800 units this year but did not give figures for 2016.

And a representative of Stallion Motors, Volkswagen’s local vehicle assembly partner, said work stopped around August due to issues relating to the exchange rate and production costs.

He said up to 30 vehicles were being rolled out monthly, although assembly did not happen on a regular basis.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

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Transcorp Hotels Expand into Marketplace, Launches Aura to Connect People, Hoteliers, Others

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Transcorp Hotels Plc, on Thursday, announced it has launched a new digital platform, Aura, through which people can book accommodation, restaurants and experiences.

Aura, Transcorp’s first in the alternative accommodation segment, is part of the company’s asset-light model, leveraging technology to deliver true hospitality, exciting experiences, and drive shareholder value.

It’s a new dawn in the hospitality industry! I am thrilled to introduce you to Aura by Transcorp, the digital platform we are using to connect people to quality accommodation, great food, and awesome experiences,” Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Transcorp Hotels Plc. Dupe Olusola said.

For more than 30 years, Transcorp Hotels Plc has been at the forefront of creating a superior guest experience at our locations. Today, our commitment to innovation has offered us an opportunity to extend this beyond the hotel premises,” Olusola added.

The launch of Aura by Transcorp is one of the most significant developments in the company’s history as it seeks to transform the travel and tourism industry in Africa by focusing on three important components of travel, whether for leisure or business — where you stay, what you eat and how you spend your time. With its people-driven hospitality model, Aura is set to revolutionise travel and help remind Africans of our deep history of hospitality.

Speaking on the launch of Aura, Obong Idiong, Chief Executive Officer at Africa Prudential Plc, Aura’s technology partners, expressed his excitement. “Finding the right accommodation when you travel can be incredibly complex. Options available for the right prices are often limited, and travellers sometimes end up with accommodation that taints the travel experience. Transcorp Hotels Plc has been able to fix that with Aura and we are proud to be associated with them.”

To ensure topnotch user experience, we built a solution to drive digital transformation through the adoption of shared living spaces for the Aura business. With an advanced search algorithm powered by artificial intelligence, Aura determines the relevance of locations taking into consideration, the customers’ preferences and requirements to meet them at the point of their needs,” Idiong added.

Priscilla Adeboye, a travel enthusiast and early adopter of Aura, said the global pandemic has pushed international travel down her list. “But I still want to be able to take some time off work or spend a weekend away from home with the family. I have found incredible homes on Aura that meet my need for space and privacy.

 

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Siemens Energy Nigeria Appoints Seun Suleiman as Managing Director

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Seun Suleiman is the New Managing Director of Siemens Energy Nigeria

Mr. Seun Suleiman is the new managing director of Siemens Energy Nigeria, the company announced on Wednesday.

According to the statement released by the energy company, Suleiman will be responsible for the entire management of operations and decisions on business policies and corporate strategy.

Commenting on his appointment, Suleiman said, “It is an absolute honor to lead the business for Siemens Energy Nigeria and I look forward to delivering on the brand’s promise of excellence.

Suleiman joined Siemens Energy in 2014, bringing over 15 years’ experience and deep expertise in the private sector across Europe and West Africa.

The statement said, “He is an accomplished business strategist and success-driven leader with strong business acumen. Suleiman has also been a core member of the executive management team at Siemens Energy serving in roles as Sales Director West Africa – Service Distributed Generation Oil & Gas and Vice President Service & Digital.

“Prior to this, he also held various functional and managerial positions with ABB Ltd UK, ABBNG Nigeria, Schneider Electric Nigeria and Dresser-Rand Nigeria Ltd.

It added that Suleiman was experienced in establishing operational excellence with specific competence in the power, oil and gas sectors.

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FG Reopens Osubi Airport Warri for Daylight Operations

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FG Reopens Osubi Airport Warri for Daylight Operations

The Federal Government on Monday said the Osubi Airport in Warri has been reopened for daylight operations.

The Minister of Aviation, Hadi Siriki, disclosed this in a tweet.

The airport was closed in February 2020 over mismanagement and debt allegation involving aviation service providers and airport management.

However, Oberuakpefe Afe, a lawmaker representing Okpe/Sapeie/vaie federal constituency, recently moved a motion for the Federal Government through the ministry of aviation and relevant authorities to reopen the airport for flight operations.

On Monday, Hadi Siriki said “I have just approved the reopening of Osubi Airport Warri, for daylight operations in VFR conditions, subject to all procedures, practices and protocols, including COVID-19, strictly being observed. There will not be need for local approvals henceforth.

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