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Transportation Minister orders Customs Brokers, Freight Forwarders to register with CRFFN or lose operating licences

All licensed customs brokers and freight forwarders
have been directed to register with the Council for the Regulation of Freight
Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN) or risk a revocation of their operating licences.

Transportation Minister, Rotimi Amaechi gave the
directive on Thursday in Lagos at a conference on improved ports efficiency in
Nigeria, organized by the Maritime Correspondents Organisation of Nigeria
The minister said he would liaise with the leadership
of the Nigeria Customs Service to ensure that customs agents who would not
register with the CRFFN, which regulates all customs brokers and freight
forwarders in the country, got punished.
He maintained that there was no reason why
some   customs brokers would not want to register with the CRFFN as
provided for in the law establishing the council.
It had been reported that some members of ANLCA
had been opposed to registering with the CFRFFN.
The minister said improving ports efficiency remained
the priority of the present administration, adding that on assuming office, he
discovered that a lot needed to be done to improve ports administration in the
He said, “The need to improve ports efficiency in
Nigeria is one of the priorities of this administration. Upon assumption of
duty, we discovered that a lot still needed to be done to improve ports
administration in the country.
“As we are aware, the role of the maritime industry in
the economic, political and social development of any nation cannot be overemphasized.
Therefore, the federal government is committed to building a virile and
efficient platform that will advance the contribution of the maritime
sub-sector in the growth of the nation’s gross domestic product (GDP) and also
serve as an alternative source of government revenue.
“As we know, seaports are entrances and exit gates
through which the trade needs of transit and landlocked countries are met. The
nation’s ports therefore provide the interface between land and sea and we are
the most cost effective mode of transportation that facilitates socio-economic,
political and cultural integration of persons, countries and regions whose
interest they serve.”
He recalled the reasons for the port reform agenda,
and said that the positive impacts of Public Private Partnership (PPP) on the
nation’s ports have been considerable.
He said the nation now had more efficient port
services, upsurge of cargo throughput, reduction of cargo dwell time, improved
vessel turnaround time and improved infrastructure.
He, however, added that despite all these
achievements, more needed to be done to further improve efficiency of the ports
and make it cost effective to attract more businesses from within and outside
the shores of the country.
He said government would continue to implement more
policies to improve private sector participation in the ports to ensure that it
contributes significantly to the growth of the nation’s economy.

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