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Trade facilitations, key to AfCFTA implementation – Customs

The Customs boss said Nigerian exports have suffered setbacks relating to Rule of Origin issues.

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Nigerian customs says the facilitation of trade requirements ranging from Pre-Arrival processes to Electronic Payments of duties would be important for the AfCFTA implementation for Nigeria.

This was disclosed by Abdullahi Babani of the Nigerian Customs Service represented by HJ Swomen (Comptroller Import and Export) on Thursday at the AfCFTA Sensitization Seminar organized by the National Action Committee of the implementation of the agreement.

Mr Swomen said the Customs is working to integrate systems with West African neighbours to prevent dumping of goods through Rules of Origin measures.

“Liberalization of 90% of tariff lines will affect customs revenues. About 85% of import come from outside Africa, leaving about 15% from the continent, but the agreement is an opportunity for Nigeria to boost exports and production,” he said.

He added that Nigerian exports have suffered setbacks relating to Rule of Origin issues and urged for a mutual exchange of data between Customs administrations in the continent.

He said that the Nigerian Customs has already begun cooperating with its counterparts like the ECOWAS Common External Tariff (CET) and the Joint Committee on Commerce Agreement signed with Benin Republic in 2004.

However, challenges still exist in the form of engagements with the Beninese Customs on Cross Border Trade Facilitations including joint border posts, mutual escort of transit goods and the interconnection of systems of both parties, which is on-going.

On requirements need for Trade facilitation he said the Customs Service has upgraded its Pre-Arrival processing, Electronic Payment, Expedited release of perishable goods, provisional release of relief materials and Dispute resolution mechanisms.

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Update: Suspected hoodlums looting Palms Mall, Shoprite in Ilorin

Hoodlums have invaded Palms Mall and Shoprite in Ilorin, looting stores and carting away items.

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Hoodlums have invaded Palms Mall and Shoprite in Ilorin, looting stores and carting away items.

Some suspected hoodlums are allegedly looting the Palms Mall on Fate road, Ilorin, Kwara State capital. The mall hosts stores of Shoprite, and Lifemate Furniture among other stores including Mobile phones retailers.

This was revealed by findings conducted by a Our source analyst who is presently in Ilorin.

He said, “They allegedly stole iPhone 11 mobile sets, other mobile sets brands, Refrigerators, and households items among others.”

According to the analyst, the suspected hoodlums forced their way into the Mall after they have stormed and allegedly looted Kwara Agro Hall, an agro resettlement centre, where they carted away Aluminium roofing sheets, mattresses, bags of cement and bags of flour among others.

Back story: Similarly, similar incidents had occured in Lagos when suspected hoodlums looted at Shoprite Malls across Surulere, Sangotedo.

According to reports, suspected thugs from Orile have invaded the mall and the neighbourhoods.

The alleged looters were seen with a cartload of goods on the streets along Ajah Road.

An eyewitness account also submitted that the hoodlums were looting shops around Bode Thomas and Adeniran Ogunsanya.

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Business

Breaking: NECO puts all examination activities on hold

NECO has put examination activities on hold due to the curfew and closure of schools by some state governments.

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The National Examinations Council (NECO) has put on hold all her 2020 school certificate examination activities due to the curfew and closure of schools by some state governments, as a result of the hijacked #EndSARS protests across the country.

Therefore, students are advised to remain at home till normalcy is restored in the country.

According to the tweet on its official Twitter handle, “The Council finds it fit to put all her 2020 School Candidate Examination Activities on hold due to the Protest Nationwide. In this regard, students are advised to go home and remain at home until normalcy is restored in the country.”

The Examination Body laments that the decision to put the examination activities on hold was taken for the overall best interest of the safety of the students and examiners as well.

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BRT owners, Primero says they lost N100 million to #ENDSARS protest

Primero Transport Services (PTS) Ltd, the owners of BRT Busses have lost over N100 million in 6 days due to the #ENDSARS protest

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Primero Transport Services (PTS) Ltd, the owners of BRT Buses have lost over N100 million in 6 days due to the #ENDSARS protest which has ravaged Nigeria’s economic capital of Lagos in the last 10 days.

According to a report from the News Agency of Nigeria, PTS Head, Corporate Communications, Mr. Mutiu Yekeen, said that the company made a lot of losses between Oct. 16 and Oct. 21.

“We are hoping something better will come out of the situation because, presently, the situation has impacted negatively on our business in terms of revenue generation. We have lost over N100 million in the last six days but we decided to stop operations to avoid damage to our vehicles and also for the safety of commuters as an organization. We value our customers more importantly; that is why we stopped operation due to the volatility of the state especially in Ikorodu. If you listen to the news this morning, you will discover that people cannot travel from Ikorodu to any part of Lagos,” Yekeen said.

Things got worse for BRT on Wednesday after suspected hoodlums burnt several buses at the Oyingbo/Iddo terminal in Lagos. According to NAN, a large number of new BRT buses yet to be deployed to routes but parked in the terminus situated behind the railway line in Oyingbo, have all been consumed by the raging fire.

Several government-owned buildings and assets were torched by protesters across Lagos including Police Stations. The suspected hoodlums also set ablaze buildings belonging to private businesses while several shopping malls were looted.

What this means: Following the curfew imposed across the state and the subsequent arson of the company’s buses and terminals, it is unlikely that they will return to business anytime soon.  The losses will likely continue and could lead to a request for a bailout if the company is to sustain operations.

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