BUSINESS Customs gives concessionaires a week to pay duties
The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) yesterday gave defaulting importers a week long ultimatum to pay their accumulated duties. NSC disclosed this in a statement issued by its National Public Relations Officer, Mr. Wale Adeniyi.
The statement said that the Customs Service would publish in national dailies, list of beneficiaries of duty payment concessions who defaulted in honouring their obligations.
It also said that the NCS had established N1.6bn as outstanding against three beneficiaries who contravened the regulations on temporary importation.
NSC said that it had also recovered N2.5bn from unpaid assessments and unutilized Risk Assessment Reports (RARs) by its recovery team, adding that the team had over 2,000 companies under investigation, and that an unpaid assessment of those companies was undergoing a comprehensive audit. The investigation, the statement said, would serve as evidence of RAR utilisation and duty payments. It quoted the Comptroller-General of Customs, Dikko Abdullahi to have said that majority of the defaulters were given the opportunity to spread their payment at their convenience.
The statement said the development was to allow the importers, with various forms of deferred payment concessions, to avoid accumulation of demurrage and facilitate trade.
According to the statement, the RARs were still hanging in the system long after the departure of the service providers who issued them.
“We can no longer tolerate them abusing the privilege. We are reminding the banks that their bonds were provided to guarantee payment of customs duty.
“We have given defaulters only one week to pay all outstanding duties, failure of which their names will be published in the national dailies,” the statement said.
It also directed that the bank bonds secured to cover the defaulting transactions be converted to duty payments at the expiration of the grace period. (NAN)