Despite diversion of Roll On Roll Off RORO vessels to neighbouring West African ports, there are indications that smuggling of vehicles through Land border have also dropped significantly.
The Seme Chapter executive council of the National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF) has said that importers of used vehicles now pay duty to the Nigeria Customs Service instead of using unapproved routes.
Chairman of Seme Chapter of NAGAFF; Eze Ekene Ajunwa told journalists in Lagos last week that the Nigeria Customs Service has made clearing of vehicles at the border command more attractive and easier, noting that smuggling of vehicles and bye-passing the border is on the decline.
He said despite the lull in smuggling activities and devaluation of the Naira, clearing of vehicles from the border during the first quarter of 2015 has been low, but said that there are indications that in coming months business will improve.
The freight forwarder noted that the Nigeria Customs Service has made vehicles entering the country easy because of the bi - lateral agreement between the two West Africa countries as regards trade.
Ajunwa stated that the Nigeria Customs Service at the Seme border command and its counterpart from Benin Republic have both been able to manage the situation concerning vehicles that are imported, bought , and cleared at Cotonou port in Benin Republic.
However, he called on importers of vehicles to carry out genuine age declaration on their vehicles at the border post, stressing that the government agency frowns at under declaration.
The NAGAFF top man noted that there is good working relationship customs and clearing agents at the border.
He also added the fall in naira value against foreign currencies may have also affected importation of vehicles because according to him , importers have stopped bring in vehicles in large quantities.