NIGERIA READY FOR BUSINESS: JAPANESE FIRMS URGED TO SET UP MANUFACTURING PLANTS IN NIGERIA
Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun has told a Japanese Trade and Investment Mission to Nigeria that the country is open and ready to continue to do business with the rest of the world and urged the big Japanese companies to invest in the country by setting up manufacturing plants, instead of shipping-in finished products.
The Minister stated this in a discussion with a Japanese Public and Private Joint Mission in promoting Trade and Investment in Nigeria in Abuja on Thursday. The Japanese Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs led the 32 private sector and government organisations to the Ministry of Finance for the engagement.
She said that Nigeria welcomes Japanese investors in banking, insurance, manufacturing and other sectors adding that: “We will assist you to do well. Many companies came into Nigeria and are doing very well and there is nothing to stop Japanese firms from doing very well.”
She said that the Government is vigorously working to improve the country’s business environment by investing in transportation infrastructure and has made doing business in Nigeria easier. “Specific reforms by removing lots of impediments, fiscal incentives to facilitate your coming into Nigeria to invest and drive your businesses, are being put in place,” she assured.
Mrs. Adeosun said that Africa’s biggest economy is now out of recession and wants to grow again, adding that the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) articulated by the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari was designed to stabilize the economy and propel it into growth.
The Minister told the Trade and Investment Mission that the Plan envisages stabilising the macroeconomic environment, boosting agricultural production for food security, ensuring energy sufficiency, improving transportation infrastructure and driving industrialization through manufacturing.
She stated that there are opportunities for the Japanese private sector investors, especially through Public Private Partnerships (PPP) in the development of transportation infrastructure, hydropower and ports
Mrs. Adeosun expressed appreciation to the Japanese Government for supporting and executing many projects through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).
Earlier in his remarks, the leader of the Mission, the Japanese Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr. Shunsuke Takei, said that they were on a Mission to in Nigeria as part of the efforts by the Japanese Government to actualize the US$30 billion Public and Private investment pledge made in August 2016 during the sixth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) in Nairobi, Kenya, which was attended by President Muhammadu Buhari.
He said that given the size of the Nigerian population and market as well as its economic recovery and potential for growth, Japanese investors were desirous of investing in Nigeria, while noting challenges in the areas of security, legal and power environments.
He praised the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan of the Federal Government and expressed optimism that the foreign exchange situation would improve further.
FG BANS MDAs FROM TRANSACTING BUSINESS WITH UNREGISTERED FIRMS
The Federal Government has banned Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) from transacting business with companies and other corporate bodies that were not duly registered by the Corporate Affairs Commission.
A circular issued by the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation said that the measure is aimed at protecting MDAs from entering contractual obligations with fake or unregistered companies, even as the Minister of Finance warned that payments for contracts by companies that did not comply with the requirements may not be considered.
For companies and other corporate bodies to qualify for business transactions with MDAs, their letterhead must bear the Registration Number (RC) as issued by the Corporate Affairs Commission.
The letter head must also have contact telephone numbers, valid e-mail address and official company address as well as the names and nationalities of the Directors of the company at the bottom of the page.
The Circular said: “This is to ensure transparency in the dealings of Government with corporate entities and to ensure compliance with the provisions of the Companies and Allied Matters Act.”
To strengthen the enforcement of the circular, the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, has directed the Accountant-General of the Federation to cause all Directors of Finance and Accounts in Federal MDAs to strictly comply with its contents.
The Minister urged those wishing to engage in transactions with Government entities to comply with the requirements to avoid delay in payment.
NIGERIA URGES IsDB TO SUPPORT THE IMPLEMENTATION OF ERGP
The Federal Government has urged the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) to do more for Nigeria by supporting the implementation of the country's Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) and the delivery of signature infrastructure to meet the development aspirations of Nigerians.
The call was made by the representative of the Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun to the 42nd annual meeting of the Bank and Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Finance, Dr. Mahmoud Isa-Dutse, who made a presentation as Nigeria's Governor on the Board of the Bank during its key business session in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
"We want IsDB to be more visible and deliver signature infrastructure projects in Nigeria. We appreciate their intervention in the water supply, health and education sectors in a number of our States, but we want IsDB to do more," he emphadised.
He continued: "Also, given IsDB’s unique role as Islamic Bank with multiplicity of intervention instruments not available to traditional development banks, we expect IDB to be bold and work collaboratively with other MDBs to ensure overall complementarity in all development interventions in Nigeria."
He expressed Nigeria’s appreciation to IsDB for consistently supporting Nigeria's economic and development aspirations, and for upgrading the Nigerian office to a regional hub, which will be responsible for other countries in West and Central Africa.
The Permanent Secretary reiterated Nigeria's call on IsDB, to increase its financial and technical assistance to Nigeria to fast track the achievement of her numerous economic, developmental and inclusive growth goals.
Dr. Isa-Dutse noted that Nigeria has derived many benefits from its membership of the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB), which has financed many development projects in various States of the federation.
He cited the US$65 million Ilesha Water Supply and Sanitation project in Osun State, a US$43 million 300-bed hospital project in Kaduna State and the US$7 million Zaria Water Supply Expansion Project as some of the ongoing projects being financed by soft loans from the Bank.
He stated that the National Programme for Food Security funded by the Bank, which was designed to reduce rural poverty through enhancing farmers' access to extension advisory support for greater productivity, was successfully implemented in Anambra, Gombe and Yobe States.
The Permanent Secretary said that discussions were on-going with the Bank to conclude, sign and implement several other programmes beneficial to Nigeria, including the US$98 million Bilingual Education Project which will provide "almajirai" access to basic education and vocational skills in Osun, Nasarawa, Niger, Kwara and Kano States. Other States in the scheme are Kaduna, Gombe, Borno and Adamawa.
He stated that in addition to approving loan facilities to Nigeria, the IsDB has made several grants and provided technical assistance to Nigeria, including a US$237, 500 to the Central Bank of Nigeria for the development of regulatory framework for non-interest banking in the country and a US$250, 000 grant to the National Emergency Management Agency for the development of NEMA’s capacity in disaster management.
NIGERIA TO SERVE AS IsDB REGIONAL HUB FOR AFRICA
Nigeria may become the regional operational hub of the 43-year old Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) in Africa, as the development finance institution is considering a proposal to expand its existing country gateway office in Abuja to serve as a key regional office.
The office, which was opened by the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun earlier in the year, will coordinate the operations of the Bank in its West and Central African member-countries, which constitute a majority of the 27 African countries in the Institution.
The Abuja gateway office will serve Nigeria, Gabon, Niger, Mozambique, Barkina Faso, the Republic of Cameroon, Uganda, Senegal, Djibouti, Guinea Bisaau, among others.
The move is part of a five-year reform package unfolded by the President of the Islamic Development Bank, Dr. Bandar Mohammed Hajjar at the opening ceremony of the 42nd meeting of the Bank in Jeddah Tuesday night.
He said that decentralization by opening of regional offices would take the Bank closer to member countries to enhance communication, improve its efficiency and performance in its operations.
“We have completed an extensive study of decentralization that included field visits to some development institutions that applied this approach to maximize benefits and avoid draw-backs. Greater powers would be devolved on regional offices to support them with specialized staff and the transfer there of many operations from the main centre,” he said.
The President of the IsDB explained that the Bank would enhance the development impact of its projects and programmes through comprehensive development solutions that integrate services and products in its member-countries.
Dr. Hajjar said that while financing infrastructure projects (energy, water, universities, ports and airports) is part of the new focus of the Bank, the reform would vigorously “seek new partners and transform competitors into development partners by harnessing strength and comparative advantages of the Bank.”
The Bank took off in 1974 and its main objectives were to finance development projects in various social and economic fields, reduce poverty and ignorance among the 1.7 billion citizens of the 57 member countries of the institution.
Nigeria is an active member of the Bank and had benefitted from its development financing programmes located in various parts of the country, and only recently Governors of the Northern States and the Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. O. Onu visited its headquarters in Jeddah where they discussed areas in which the Bank could intervene in different sectors of social and economic development.
The Nigerian delegation to the 2017 meeting of the Bank was led by the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Finance, Dr. Mahmoud Isa-Dutse.
FEDERAL MINISTRY OF FINANCE REVISED EXPORT GUIDELINES FOR NON-OIL EXPORT
Any person intending to export non-oil Products out of Nigeria shall in the first instance, process the Nigerian Export Proceeds Form (Form NXP or any other form so prescribed) through an Authorized Dealer Bank irrespective of the value and whether or not payment is involved.
The following procedures shall apply from the date of issuance of these guidelines in respect of all Non-oil export products from Nigeria.
1.All non-oil exports from Nigeria shall be subject to inspection by the Pre-shipment Inspection Agent(s) (PIA) appointed for that purpose by the Government.
2.Goods prohibited for exportation from Nigeria as contained in the annual Fiscal Policy guidelines shall not be inspected by a Pre-shipment Inspection Agent(s). Goods on the current Export Prohibition list are detailed in SCHEDULE “B” as appended.
3.The focus of the Pre-shipment Inspection Agents (PIAs) shall be to ascertain the quality, quantity and price competitiveness of exports from Nigeria.
4.An exporter shall collect for completion a set of Form NXP in sextuplicate from any bank of his choice. The completed Form NXP shall be returned to the same bank not less than five (5) working days prior to loading. On receipt of the completed form, the bank shall assign number to it, register and endorse same. The bank shall retain the original copy and send the remaining copies to the Pre-shipment Inspection Agent(s) within three (3) days of receipt and a photocopy to the exporter within twenty four (24) hours.
5.The exporter shall open an export domiciliary account with any bank in Nigeria with which the exporter registered the Form NXP in the first instance. The Form NXP shall be completed in sextuplicate in respect of each export transaction.
6.The exporter shall retain a photocopy of the Form NXP and use the NXP number as reference in all dealings with the issuing bank, Central Bank of Nigeria, Pre-shipment Inspection Agent(s), Nigeria Customs Service and any other relevant Agency.
7.The Form NXP shall be utilized within six (6) months from the date of registration. On expiration, the bank can process and approve an exporter’s first request for the extension of an expired Form NXP for a period of not more than ninety (90) days. Any subsequent request for extension shall be forwarded by the bank to the Director, Trade and Exchange Department, Central Bank of Nigeria, Abuja for determination.
8.Following the completion of the Form NXP, the exporter shall collect a REQUEST FOR INFORMATION (RFI) Form from the Pre-shipment Inspection Agent. The purpose of the RFI Form is to enable the Inspection Agents to coordinate with the exporter, a date and time for the inspection.
9.(a)The exporter shall submit the completed RFI to the Pre-shipment Inspection Agent(s), along with all other relevant documents relating to the export transaction not less than 5 days prior to shipment.
(b)The PIA(s) shall set up websites for interaction and online processing of export applications.
10.The exporter shall be required to pay to a designated bank immediately after inspection of the non-oil export but prior to the issuance of CCI, the Nigerian Export Supervision Scheme (NESS) Levy which is currently 0.5% of the F.O.B value of the exported non-oil products and deliver the receipt to the PIA within five (5) days of the payment.
11.The exporter shall also request and collect a BILL OF LADING DECLARATION FORM from the PIA which shall be completed after loading and submitted thereafter to the PIA.
12.The Pre-shipment Inspection Agent(s) shall inspect the quality & quantity, determine the fair value of the exports and issue a Clean Certificate of Inspection (CCI) in respect of such exports after receipt of Form NXP and NESS Levy receipt. The PIA shall collaborate with other relevant regulatory agencies (e.g NAFDAC, SON, Plant and Animal Quarantine, Federal Produce Inspectorate, etc.) for quality inspection of regulated products.
13.The exporter shall retain a photocopy of the Form NXP and use the NXP number as reference in all dealings with the Central Bank of Nigeria, the Pre-shipment Agent(s) and the Nigeria Customs Service within five (5) days of the inspection.
14.The Pre-shipment Inspection Agent(s) shall complete its own section in the NXP Form, send the second copy to the Central Bank of Nigeria, retain a photocopy and forward the remaining four copies to the Nigeria Customs Service.
15.After completing its section of the form, the Nigeria Customs Service shall retain the third copy and distribute the remaining three copies as follows:
•Fourth copy to the Central Bank of Nigeria
•Fifth copy to the Nigerian Export Promotion Council.
•Sixth copy to the exporter. (The exporter shall make a photocopy and submit to the processing/collecting bank to update its records).
16. The Pre-shipment Inspection Agent(s) shall ensure the quality & quantity, advise the fair value of the products exported and shall, if satisfied, issue a Clean Certificate of Inspection (CCI) in respect of such products. The CCI shall comprise eight (8) original copies which shall be distributed as follows:
•1st Original to the exporter for the Buyer
•2nd to the exporter for his bank
•3rd to the exporter for ship/freight Agent
•4th copy to the Nigerian Export Promotion Council.
•5th copy to the Nigeria Customs Service (Area Comptroller at the Port of shipment)
•6th copy to the Federal Ministry of Finance
•7th copy to the Central Bank of Nigeria
•8th copy to the Nigerian Ports Authority.
•A Certified True Copy each to the Nigeria Customs Service (Headquarters), National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
17.In the event of rejection of a product on inspection by the PIA or any other related issues, the exporter shall be contacted for explanation. A Non-negotiable Certificate of Inspection (NNCI) shall be issued by the PIA where discrepancy exists in the value of the exports and the value earlier assessed by the exporter, or in the quality and quantity of the goods so inspected.
18.(a)The inspection shall take place at the seaports, airports, terminals or other points of dispatch or at point of production and or storage in the presence of the Nigeria Custom Service and other relevant Agencies.
(b) After the receipt of RFI and other relevant documents, the PIA shall schedule inspection within 48 hours and issue CCI within 72 hours after inspection of the consignment.
19.The exporter shall provide necessary logistics at the export terminals/warehouses to enable the Pre-shipment Inspection Agent(s) perform the inspection.
20. Where exports involve processed food, drugs, animals or plants, liquefied natural gas, liquefied petroleum gas, condensate, Dual Purpose Kerosene (DPK), lubricants and grease, the relevant Government Agencies shall be invited for certification.
21.Exporters should be aware that once goods have been inspected and CCI issued, any variation between goods presented for loading and those confirmed by the CCI will render the exporter liable to penalties in accordance with the Laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
22.The Nigeria Customs Service shall ensure that any cargo without a CCI duly issued by a Government appointed Pre-shipment Inspection Agent is not loaded into the sea going vessel, aircraft or border crossing vessel.
23. Repatriation of Export Proceeds:
(a) All exporters shall ensure that export proceeds are repatriated and credited to their export domiciliary account within 180 days from the Bill of Lading date.
(b) Letters of Credit (LC), Bills for collection, advance payment and/or other approved international modes of payment shall be accepted for all exports from Nigeria.
(c) It is the responsibility of Central Bank of Nigeria to monitor the repatriation of all export proceeds.
24. The Nigeria Customs Service shall submit to the Director, Trade and Exchange Department, Central Bank of Nigeria, on a monthly basis, shipment copies (Fourth copy) of the Form NXP to cover the period’s export transactions.
25. The Pre-shipment Inspection Agent(s) shall submit monthly, quarterly and annual statistical returns on export transactions to the Federal Ministry of Finance, Central Bank of Nigeria, Nigerian Export Promotion Council, National Bureau of Statistics, Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation and the Nigeria Customs Service.
Non-compliance with the requirements or provisions of these Guidelines will attract the following sanctions:
(a) Failure to pay NESS Levy within one month of the shipment date by any Exporter shall attract a penalty of 10% of the total amount of NESS Levy outstanding on the transaction.
(b) Non- Repatriation of Export Proceeds within 180 days by any Exporter shall attract a fine of 1% of the amount of the export proceeds that remains outstanding.
(c) Any violation of these Guidelines by banks including, but not limited to the following:
i.Late submission of NXP Forms received from Exporters to PIAs;
ii.Late/Non-remittance of NESS Fees paid by Exporters to CBN;
iii.Late submission of NESS Fee receipts to PIAs and Exporters;
iv.Late/Non-rendition of returns on Export Proceeds; shall attract appropriate sanctions by CBN.
(d) Any PIA that delays issuance of the CCIs later than 72 hours after inspection and the receipt of all relevant documents including NESS levy payment receipts shall be liable to a fine of 25% of the service fee due to the PIA on the affected transaction. The documents to be attached to a completed RFI shall include:
•Copy of Form NXP
(e) Any PIA that consistently fails for a period of three (3) months to submit monthly report on or before the 10th day of the subsequent month shall receive a query from the Ministry. Also, any PIA that fails to submit same for up to six (6) consecutive months within the same year shall be deemed as non-performing and would have its contract terminated;
(f) Any PIA that consecutively fails for three (3) months to meet with the scheduled time of inspection shall lose the territory (State) to another PIA and it shall be re-assigned by the Ministry.
(g) If it is established that it is the fault of the PIA that the export was done without NXP and proper issuance of CCI, the PIA shall be queried and warned. If the PIA persistently defaults in like manner for six (6) months, it shall have its contract withdrawn. On the other hand, if it is established that it is the fault of the shipping line/agent, it shall be reported to the Nigerian Shippers Council for appropriate sanction;
(h) Failure of any PIA to report attempts to export substandard goods
should immediately result in query, warning and subsequent suspension.
HOME FINANCE DEPARTMENT
FEDERAL MINISTRY OF FINANCE
15th March, 2017
SCHEDULE ‘A’ EXPORT GOODS EXEMPT FROM INSPECTION:
•Used motor vehicles
•Perishables i.e. day old chicks, human eyes, human remains,
•Objects of art
•Pyrotechnic products and Arms
•Implements of war
•Household and other non-commercial products including:
•Gifts and personal effects, trade samples/printed business matter,
•Machineries and equipment for repairs abroad, machinery for the execution of specific contract, re-exports,
•Return of empty containers
•Supplies to Diplomatic/Consular Missions and supplies to UNO for their own needs.
SCHEDULE ‘B’ PROHIBITED EXPORTS:
•Raw hides and skin
•Timber (rough and sawn)
•Unprocessed rubber latex and rubber lumps
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