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Nigeria Customs Service seizes contraband worth N67 million 

About N67 million worth of contraband has been seized by the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) through its anti-smuggling operations.

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Nigeria Customs Service seizes contraband worth N67 million 

About N67 million worth of contraband has been seized by the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) through its anti-smuggling operations. This was disclosed by the Acting Controller of the Federal Operations Unit (FOU) Zone ‘A’, Usman Yahaya.

The items seized by the customs between January 7th and 14th includes 2,065 jerry-cans of vegetable oil (25 litres each); 1,185 bags of 50kg foreign parboiled rice; 1500 jerry-cans (25 litres) of diesel, with duty paid value of N67 million along various unapproved routes within its areas of coverage.

Nigeria Customs Service seizes contraband worth N67 million 

According to Yahaya, the command was able to achieve this feat as a result of the credible intelligence used. The actions carried out include blockage of all revenue leakages, trade facilitation, and intensification of anti-smuggling operations at various entry points: seaports, land borders, and airports within the South-West zone.

Yahaya to smugglers: The Ag. Controller of Customs called on all members of the public to support the fight against smuggling by giving necessary information when the need arises. Guardian reported that he also warned smugglers against their continuous smuggling activities and urged them to desist from engaging in illegal trade.

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What you should know: Nairametrics had reported that Yahaya was redeployed from his position of Coordinator of Strike Force, Zone ‘A’ to FOU ‘A’ as the Acting Controller. This was a part of the command’s strategies to re-jig and reposition the Service for greater efficiency and effectiveness, especially in the areas of revenue generation, trade facilitation as well as combating smuggling which looks like it is paying off now.

[READ MORE: Customs denies spending N1.6 billion on recruitment exercise alone)

Yahaya was enthusiastic about his new post as he thanked the Comptroller General of Customs, Hameed Ibrahim Ali, and the entire management team for considering him worthy. He assured that he will work continuously and tirelessly with all officers to end smuggling and take the command to the next level.

Chidinma holds a degree in Mass communication from Caleb University Lagos and a Masters in view in Public Relations. She strongly believes in self development which has made her volunteer with an NGO on girl child development. She loves writing, reading and travelling. You may contact her via - [email protected]

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Financial Services

CBN grants Greenwich Trust Limited operational license for merchant banking

CBN has upscaled Greenwich Trust Limited to the status of a merchant bank.

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NSE Market Data, NSE records total transactions of N121.99 billion in August , 2019 events in the Nigerian capital market and outlook for 2020, Why you might need a capital market lawyer

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has upscaled Greenwich Trust Limited and granted it, operational license for merchant banking in the country.

According to an official statement released by the firm, the entity would be known as Greenwich Merchant Bank Limited. This license allows Greenwich Merchant Bank to upscale and offer such diverse services as corporate banking, investment banking, financial advisory services, securities dealing, treasury wealth and asset management, etc., making it possible to provide increased value to stakeholders beyond its previous scope.

Recall that the minimum capital requirements for establishing a merchant bank according to Merchant Banking Licensing Regulations in 2010 are N15 billion

(READ MORE: CBN debits banks N216.1 billion for CRR compliance)

With the addition of Greenwich Merchant Bank, Nigeria now has six merchant banks. The others are; FBN Quest, Coronation Merchant Bank, DSH Merchant Bank, Nova Merchant Bank and Rand Merchant Bank.

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About Greenwich Trust Limited

Greenwich Trust Limited is an investment banking firm duly registered with relevant authorities such as the Nigerian Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). It is a diversified firm with subsidiaries such as Asset management, GTL Properties, GTL Securities Limited, Cedar Express Limited and Meyer Plc.

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Business News

Emirates Airlines banned from operating in Nigeria

UAE’s Emirate Airline has been banned from operating in Nigeria.

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Just in: FG bars Air France, KLM and other foreign airlines, FG to spend N13 billion for automation projects in 4 airports, domestic flights, international passengers, Coronavirus: FG enforces immediate screening of travellers at airports with new directive

Emirates Airline has been added to the list of airlines which have been banned from operating in  Nigeria. The ban will take effect from the 21st of September.

This was announced by the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika in a social media statement on Friday.

“The PTF sub committee met today with EU Ambassadors to discuss Lufthansa, Air France/KLM ban. The meeting progressed well. Emirates Airlines’s situation was reviewed & they are consequently included in the list of those not approved, with effect from Monday the 21st Sept. 2020,” Sirika stated.

This comes as the UAE government has been accused of not renewing visas of Nigerians in Dubai and also rumours of a VISA ban for Nigerians applying for visas.

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Last month, the UAE embassy in Nigeria denied there is a VISA ban on Nigerians entering the Middle Eastern country. They said: “At the onset of the COVlD-19 pandemic, the UAE took a number of precautionary measures to combat the virus’ spread, including the temporary suspension on issuing UAE visas for all nationalities as of March 17, 2020.

“After entering the recovery phase of the pandemic, the UAE eased some measures on July 7, permitting visitors from various countries to adhere to the necessary precautionary measures, including by showing negative PCR test results within 92 hours of travelling to the UAE. This includes those visiting from Nigeria.”

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Energy

CBN introduces N250 billion stimulus package for gas investment to ease pain of fuel price increase

The CBN has introduced a stimulus package to help stimulate investment in gas as an alternative to fuel.

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To test FX market, CBN pumps $50 million, CBN issues guidelines to Finance Institutions on establishment of Subsidiaries and SPVs, CBN injects $2.63 billion to defend naira in one month, CBN’s COVID-19 N50 billion targeted credit facility, CBN’s heterodox policies buoys credit growth

As part of the palliative following the sharp increase in the price in the pump price of petrol, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has introduced a N250 billion stimulus package under a National Gas Expansion Programme that it hopes will help stimulate investment in the gas value chain and spur its use in transportation as an alternative to fuel-powered cars.

Large scale projects under this intervention programme will be financed under the Power and Airlines Intervention Fund (PAIF), in line with existing guidelines regulating the PAIF, while small scale operators and retail distributors will be financed by the NIRSAL Microfinance Bank (NMFB) and/or any other Participating Financial Institution (PFI) under the Agribusiness/Small and Medium Enterprises Investment Scheme (AgSMEIS).

This initiative is to be implemented in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Petroleum Resources.

The objectives of the facility include;

  • Improved access to finance for private sector investments in the domestic gas value chain.
  • Stimulate investments in the development of infrastructure to optimize the domestic gas resources for economic development.
  • Fast track the adoption of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) as the fuel of choice for transportation and power generation, as well as Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) as the fuel of choice for domestic cooking, transportation, and captive power.
  • Fast track the development of gas-based industries particularly petrochemical (fertilizer, methanol, etc) to support large industries such as agriculture, textile, and related industries.
  • Provide leverage for additional private sector investments in the domestic gas market.
  • Boost employment across the country.

The activities that are eligible under the intervention shall include;

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  • Establishment of gas processing plants and small scale petrochemical plants.
  • Establishment of gas cylinder manufacturing plants.
  • Establishment of L-CNG regasification modular systems
  • Establishment of autogas conversion kits or components manufacturing plants.
  • Establishment of CNG primary and secondary compression stations.
  • Establishment and manufacturing of LPG retail skid tanks and refilling equipment.
  • Development/enhancement of autogas transportation systems, conversion, and distribution infrastructure.
  • Enhancement of domestic cylinder production and distribution by cylinder manufacturing plants and LPG wholesale outlets.
  • Establishment/expansion of micro-distribution outlets and service centres for LPG sales, domestic cylinder injection, and exchange and
  • Any other mid to downstream gas value chain related activity recommended by the Ministry of Petroleum Resources.

The aggregators, manufacturers, processors, wholesale distributors, and related activities shall be funded under the Power and Airline Intervention Fund (PAIF), while the Small and Medium-scale Enterprises (SMEs) and retail distributors shall be funded by NIRSAL Microfinance Bank under AgSMEIS.

For the manufacturers, processors, wholesale distributors, etc, the term loan shall be determined based on the activity and shall not exceed N10 billion per obligor. The working capital shall be a maximum of N500 million per obligor.

While for the small and medium enterprises, the term loan shall be based on the activity and shall not exceed N50 million per obligor. The working capital shall be a maximum of N5 million per obligor.

Interest Rate

The interest rate under the intervention shall be at not more than 5% per annum (all-inclusive) up to February 28, 2021, thereafter, interest on the facility shall revert to 9% per annum (all-inclusive) with effect from March 1, 2021.

Loan Tenor and Moratorium

The manufacturers, processors, wholesale distributors, will have term loans which shall have a maximum tenor of 10 years (not exceeding December 31, 2030) with a maximum of a 2-year moratorium on principal repayment only. The working capital facility of 1 year with a maximum rollover of not more than twice, subject to prior approval.

The small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and retail distributors will have term loans that shall have a maximum tenor of 5 years (not exceeding December 31, 2030) with a maximum of 2 years on principal repayment only. The working capital facility of 1 year with a maximum rollover of not more than twice and subject to prior approval.

This new initiative involves getting many vehicles to run on gas by collaborating with investors to build the required infrastructure such as pipelines and petrol stations. It is also expected to help accelerate the use of natural gas and end gas flaring.

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