The Federal Government of Nigeria has granted approval for the reopening of the Seme land border, allowing the importation of vehicles once again. Ibrahim Musa, the Director of Road Transport in the Ministry of Transportation, announced this development on Wednesday, during a meeting between officials from Nigeria and Benin Republic organized by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).
Musa addressed the concerns raised by freight forwarders operating at the Seme border, stating, “The former Minister of State for Transportation and I received pleas from the freight forwarders to reactivate the border for the free movement of goods and services.” He further explained that they prepared a memo on the matter, which was duly considered and sent to the government.
In addition to Musa’s remarks, Dera Nnadi, the Customs Area Controller of Seme Border Command, expressed the impact of the previous administration’s suspension of vehicle imports through land borders. Nnadi noted a decline in revenue for the Customs service due to this policy.
Acknowledging the stakeholders’ concerns, Nnadi stated, “The former Minister of Transportation, in response to our requests and those of the stakeholders, promised to present them to the Federal Executive Council (FEC), one of which is the complete reopening of this border.” He went on to inform that the Ministry has confirmed the submission of the memo to FEC, and it has been adopted. The new government has been assured that all the requests have been taken into account.
The decision to reopen the Seme land border for vehicle imports marks a significant development in trade relations between Nigeria and Benin Republic. The resumption of this activity is expected to boost economic activities at the border and contribute to increased revenue for the Customs service. Stakeholders, including freight forwarders, are likely to welcome this decision, as it facilitates the free movement of goods and services, benefiting both nations involved.
As the implementation of this decision unfolds, further details and guidelines will be provided to ensure a smooth and efficient process for vehicle importation through the Seme land border.
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