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Customs to extend operations beyond Seme, Comptroller

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The Seme Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service said its operations will soon extend beyond the Seme Border into the Benin Republic and vice versa.

It said this following the recent bilateral agreement between the Nigeria Customs Service and the Republic of Benin Customs Administration.

The new Customs Area Comptroller of the command, Timi Bomordi, said this on Monday at the command, when he took over from Dera Nnadi as the new Area Comptroller of the command.

Bomordi said that once the implementation began, the customs administrations of both countries would start generating revenues in the trillions of dollars.

He said, “If what was proposed comes into fruition, it means that the functions of NCS are going to extend beyond the borders and are going right into the corridor of the Benin Republic, vis-à-vis the operations of Benin Customs, which would also extend beyond its borders right into our ports.

“It is going to be a symbiotic relationship, and we cannot expect anything less than what we give; we expect excellence on both sides of the divide, and hopefully, it will be transformative.”

Last week, the NCS said it had concluded plans to partner with the Republic of Benin Customs Administration so as to enhance cross-border trade between the two West African nations.
Speaking further, Bomordi said that once trade was enhanced, the capacity to generate more revenue would also be enhanced.

He said, “Once people can move freely, goods can move freely, and if services can move freely in this corridor, we are talking about the African Continental Free Trade Agreement, and what this entails is generating revenue in trillions of dollars. It is totally transformative for Africa, and we need to trade more along this corridor.

“We cannot trade more if our processes and systems are not properly aligned, and thinking of both sides of the divide must be properly synchronized.”

He also said that with the newly signed agreement between the Benin Republic and Nigeria, the issue of multiple security checkpoints along the Badagry Expressway would soon be eliminated.

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