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Home SHIPPING & PORT SERVICES Importers Are Now Abandoning Their Goods At The Nation’s Seaports As A...

Importers Are Now Abandoning Their Goods At The Nation’s Seaports As A Result Of The High Clearing Costs

Shippers in the country have decried the high cost of clearing of consignments and attributed it as the reason why importers abandon their goods at the nation’s seaports.

Often times, many importers abandon their cargoes at the nation’s seaports located in Lagos, Koko, Sapele, Calabar, Port Harcourt, Warri and Onne after such goods have accumulated demurrage running into several millions of naira.

Once the consignee, importer or agent fails to take the cargo out of the terminal at the stipulated time, the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) may declare such cargo as abandoned cargo and eventually dispose it off as “overtime cargo”.

Giving reasons for this development, the Shippers Association of Lagos State (SALS) said importers had been abandoning their cargoes at Nigerian ports, due to high costs of clearing such cargoes.

The President of the association, Mr. Nicol Jonathan expressed dismay that the cost of cargo clearance has become “uncontrollable.”

As a way out, he called for a review of the nation’s import policy so that Nigerians can begin to reap the benefits in the maritime industry.

Jonathan said the sliding naira exchange rate had also slowed down business at the ports. According to him, clearing a 20 feet container is  costing as much as N840, 000 while to clear a 40 feet container now cost N1.2 million.  He said Customs, shipping and terminal charges, as well as local transportation charges had not changed in spite of the port reforms announced by the federal government.


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