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Importers have 90 days to clear SONCAP default goods as SON prepares to end EPCC system

Standard Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has said it would end the regime of
electronic provision clearance certificate (EPCC) regime as a result of massive
abuse by importers.

advised all stakeholders involved in the importation of SON regulated products
to go back to certifying their products offshore before bringing them in.
SON, Dr. Paul Angya, however said it will reopen the SONCAP Portal for use for
90 days during which epcc goods will be subjected to physical examination
before release.
effective date would between April 25 and July 24, with the DG warning that
after this period, importers with epcc goods would be made to face the wrath of
the law.
warned that after July 24, any imports without SONCAP certification will be
detained and charged a fine of 20 percent of the value of the goods and the
goods will be subjected to rest.
the goods pass they are released to the stakeholders. If they fail, they will
be destroyed and the importer also requested to pay for the destruction”, Angya
stakeholders made up of importers, freight forwarders, traders’ associations
from major markets at a forum in Lagos Tuesday .
recalled that before September 10, 2015, the SONCAP certification were carried
out and hard copy certification were issued for processing Form M and
Pre-Arrival Assessment Report (PAAR), adding that this was abused in all form
by stakeholders to the detriment of the national economy.
said that it was this that made SON to decide to use information technology to
enhance the security of the SONCAP process by issuing e-certificate integrated
to the National Integrated Customs Information System (NICIS) for direct use
for processing Form M and PAAR.
explained that in doing this, SON introduced epcc in line with the World Trade
Organsiation (WTO) requirements to ensure that trade concerns processed before
the new process did not suffer any consequences or delays, leading to the
opening of epcc for 90 days, between September 10 and December 9, last year.
he regretted that this became the route of bringing in goods without SONCAP
certification, a development, he said has resulted into massive importation of
substandard goods into the country.
to him, “more than 60 percent of imports are by passing the regulation process
using the epcc and other gimmicks. 
“We cannot continue permanently with the EPCC regime, the EPCC has to be stopped at a point and all stakeholders involved in
the importation of SON regulated products to go back to certifying their
products offshore before bringing them in.”
explained that the SONCAP certification of products before imports had
advantage for businesses and national economy, adding that importers are
assured of the quality of the goods they are bringing into the country.
DG also warned importers to desist from importation of substandard goods,
adding that information reaching the organisatiopn showed that importers travel
to China to request specifically for substandard goods for the sake of making
more money.
He warned that very soon such importers who are not ready to change would have
themselves to blame, as SON was determined to end the era of substandard goods
being imported into the country.
revealed that efforts have been made to get Chinese manufacturers to stop
manufacturing substandard goods for Nigeria, adding that an MOU would be signed
for that effect soon.
the dangers of substandard products to the society, including the security
risk, he warned that those who are not ready to change would suffer the full
force of the law.
Credit: Shipping Day

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