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Customs Intercepts Contraband worth N31.5m in Katsina



Customs in Ogun generates N38.5m revenue in 3rd quarter

… Promotes 36 officers in Sokoto area Command***

The Katsina Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service intercepted contraband which Duty Paid Value was put at N31. 4 from April 1 to date.

Alhaji Wada Cedi, the Comptroller in charge of Katsina, made this known while displaying the goods before newsmen in Katsina.

Also read: Customs reopen Kamba border

He said that the goods include vehicles, foreign rice and pasta, vegetable oil, macaroni, cow skin, premium motor spirit (petrol) and gas cylinders.

Ceci said the customs also seized eight vehicles with a DPV of N8.6 million.

He said the ban on the export and import of contraband remains in spite of the reopening of the Jibiya border.

“I want the general public to get this clear, the ban on the importation or exportation of contraband remains enforced.

”So, contraband shouldn’t be imported because the aim is to make the country self-reliant.

”We will also intensify surveillance on all the borders and other routes to ensure compliance,” he said.

In the same vein, the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has promoted 36 officers, including Mr Tahir Balarabe, the Public Relations Officer, and Sokoto Area Command.

According to a statement on Wednesday in Sokoto, the NCS said it promoted Balarabe to the post of Superintendent of Custom.

Balarabe, who signed the statement, said that 35 other officers were also promoted within the area command as part of a national promotion exercise by the service.

The Area Comptroller in charge of Sokoto and Zamfara, Mr Abdulhameed Ma’aji, said the promotion was designed to boost personnel performance, noting that those promoted deserved it.

Ma’aji urged the officers to see the promotion as a call for rededication and a renewed commitment to service.

“So, we expect you to continue to work hard to justify the promotion through enhanced revenue generation and blocking of all the routes through which prohibited goods are smuggled into the country,” he said.


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NIMASA To Make Blue Economy Nigeria’s Big-Time Earner



Tinubu vows to sustain Nigeria’s progressive agenda beyond 2023

…To explore opportunities in the over 2.5 trillion-dollar global ocean resources

Dr. Bashir Jamoh, Director-General, of Nigeria Maritime and Safety Agency (NIMASA), says the agency is working towards making the Blue economy Nigeria’s main source of revenue.

Jamoh made this known while speaking with journalists on the sideline of a three-day Nigeria-Netherlands Economic Consultation held in Abuja from June 6 to June 8, stressing the agency’s commitment to Nigeria’s vision of diversifying its economy,

The Economic Consultation facilitated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs seeks to modify the already existing trade treaty between Nigeria and the Netherlands to boost economic cooperation.

Jamoh said that NIMASA is driving policies that would enable Nigeria to explore the over 2.5 trillion-dollar worth of ocean resources that the world has.

The NIMASA D-G said that collaborating with the Netherlands as a maritime nation would enable Nigeria to achieve this goal for mutual benefit.

“We are seeing what we can explore from the over 2.5 trillion-dollar worth of ocean resources that we have.

“If oceans were to be an economy, it would be the seventh largest in the world just followed by Britain and next to Brazil.

“The Netherlands being a member of the council reelected in 2021, they have one of the largest ports in Europe and one of the largest in the world if you exclude Asia.

“The resources in our own oceans and seas are an economy that cannot be ignored.

“I have looked at the trade relationship between Nigeria and the Netherlands, the major components used to be petroleum, fish, and milk. So also, the exports between Nigeria and the Netherlands.

“The amount of export from Nigeria to the Netherlands amount to about 2.63 billion as at 2021, while from the Netherlands to Nigeria upon 4.58 million. But in so doing, what is the contribution and the percentage of our oceans?

“In spite of the fact that we have 853km of our own coastal line, we have about 10,000 kilometers of our inland waterways and all these, the resources in this have a lot of potential of building both economies,” Jamoh said.

Jamoh said that now is the time for the Netherlands to expand its maritime ties with Nigeria following the recent approval by the National Assembly which would allow NIMASA to disburse 700 million dollars for ship expansion in Nigeria.

He also called for increased capacity building between both countries to continue to develop the human resources in the sector.

This is also as Jamoh lamented Nigeria grappling with just one maritime university as compared to the Netherlands, a country smaller than Nigeria having six maritime universities.

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Bola Babarinde: APC Chieftain Advocates Ports Reform To Facilitate Economic Growth



…Stressed the need for improved Ease of Business 

Mr. Bola Babarinde, a former Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), South African Chapter, has advised President Bola Tinubu to reform the nation’s ports to enhance ease of doing business and aid economic growth.

Babarinde in a statement on Thursday in Lagos, said that the ease of doing business was a catalyst for economic growth.

“It is important to address a small but important area that can help the new administration of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu to take off with great speed and leap forward in economic development.

“It is about Ease of Doing Business in Nigeria with Ports reform declared as a state of emergency.

“The frustration that the business community goes through in the hands of our port officials is terrible and condemnable which can be classified as economic sabotage by the individuals charged and trusted to man those departments and entry points into our economy.

“Yes, it’s true that government policies empower this corruption to flourish because officials take advantage of the system, and loopholes in such policies.

“It is the reason why it is time to move away from analogue system and unnecessary bureaucratic bottleneck at our ports to a modern automated, efficient and profitable system,” he said.

Babarinde lamented that there were about 20 documents required to complete the clearing of goods in Nigeria’s ports.

While describing each section level of approval as unnecessary, the APC chieftain said that the layers of approval had continued to perpetuate the peculiar problems of extortion and delays at the ports.

He said that these series of documents and approvals had negative consequences on the economy with adverse effects on trade and commerce.

“Why can’t Nigeria borrow a leaf from a country close to us, Ghana which has streamlined its process with experience of clearing goods with just two documents (Proforma invoice and Bill of Landing).

“The unnecessary hardships and hurdles posed to business at ports should be addressed urgently and immediately for recalibration of the economy.

“Digitalisation of the ports for clearing and shipment of goods will ease doing business, improve trade and commerce, increase productivity, and boost revenue for Nigeria.

“It will also eradicate the few unscrupulous individuals that are benefitting from the poor management of our ports to the detriment of the economic development of Nigeria,” he said.

According to him, Nigerians in the diaspora with experience in advanced economies across the world are ready and willing to contribute their quota, through technical expertise and advice for the success of the Tinubu administration.

*Bola Babarinde

Babarinde noted that the military incursion that ousted Nigeria’s first set of political leaders disrupted the nation’s journey to socioeconomic advancement and development.

He said that the military regimes imported and foisted the American style of democracy on Nigeria, which he said was expensive and sophisticated with its challenging complexities for the nation’s level of human development.

“Now, after years of our so-called democracy which Americans believe is the best for the world, we now enjoy freedoms promised by the system but it is a freedom without equity and justice.

“The equity and justice here is an equal level playing ground for all citizens to have access to basic things of life, eradication of poverty, and entrenchment of good governance with sincere leadership by those in government,” he said.

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IUU Fishing: US Partners with Western Indian Ocean Countries to Explore Solution



Blue Ventures lead a three-day symposium to develop a regional IUUF strategy

Fishery resources contribute to the food security of millions of people in the world and are especially important in island nations like Madagascar, Comoros, Mauritius, and Seychelles.  According to the United Nations, more than 600 million people depend on fisheries and aquaculture for their livelihoods, but fishery resources face increasing threats from Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) fishing.

Despite measures taken at both the national and regional levels to deter, combat, and eliminate IUU fishing, this problem poses a significant threat to marine biodiversity and the livelihoods and food security of coastal communities and undermines the potential for a sustainable and equitable regional Blue Economy.  Given the global nature of IUU Fishing, solutions require effective regional and international collaboration.

To address these important issues, the U.S. Embassy in Madagascar and Comoros has partnered with Blue Ventures Conservation Madagascar, the Ministry of Fisheries and the Blue Economy, and the Institut Halieutique et des Sciences Marines (IHSM) to bring together fishery experts, government representatives, civil society, and the private sector from these island nations June 5-7 in Antananarivo.

This symposium is an important part of a larger 227,000 USD grant to Blue Ventures from the U. S. Department of State to promote public awareness, facilitate policy reform, develop a regional IUU strategy, and strengthen the network of actors in the Western Indian Ocean.

In his remarks to the symposium, Tsimanaoraty Paubert Mahatante, Madagascar’s Minister of Fisheries and Blue Economy, stressed the importance of this work to Madagascar:

“As part of the improvement of fisheries governance, we have committed to joining FiTI, the Fisheries Transparency Initiative, and today we have become a candidate country. Madagascar will soon have its own strategy and a national plan to combat IUU fishing and intends to sign partnership agreements with NGOs such as Sea Shepherd and Global Fishing Watch for the implementation of this document.”

Deputy Assistant Secretary for Oceans, Fisheries, and Polar Affairs at the U.S. Department of State Maxine Burkett, through recorded remarks, highlighted the United States’ ongoing commitment: “Combating illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing (or IUU fishing) is a global priority of the U.S. government.  Our embassies in Western Indian Ocean Island nations have made IUU fishing a central part of their work…. We encourage other nations in the region to consider joining FiTI, too, and the Western Indian Ocean region could become a world leader in building increased collaboration and coordination of fishing policy.”

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