BUA Cement Plc received a waiver from the government for the export of Cement to the Niger Republic via the Sokoto Border.
This was first disclosed in an earnings call held in July which provided investors with details on the second-quarter results of BUA Cement Plc. Nairametrics has also seen a letter from Customers approving the waiver.
Despite Closing the land borders for trade for over a year, Nigerian Cement companies were approved for land export to West Africa. In the document viewed by Nairametrics, BUA was also given the approval to export to Niger Republic. Dangote Cement announced on Monday that they have exported through land borders during an investors call.
The Nigerian customs granted approval to BUA Cement to transport Cement to Niger Republic in June. Dangote Cement and BUA Cement are competitors in the cement manufacturing space and are first and second respectively in terms of cement production capacity in the country.
The Customs letter signed by a Zonal Coordinator read in part:
” I am directed to forward herewith a letter from the office of the National Security Adviser …dated 17th, June 2020 on the above subject matter. The trucks will exit and return through Illela Border Station in Sokoto State. You are to monitor the movement towards ensuring that they are loaded only with Cement to Niger Republic and return back to Nigeria”
What you should know
Nairametrics reported in October 2019 that the Federal Government of Nigeria ordered the complete closure of the Nigerian border, placing a ban on both legitimate and illegitimate movement of goods in and out of the country.
Nairametrics also reported today that the Nigerian government has also given Dangote Cement the approval to export Cement to West African countries through Nigeria’s land borders, which have been closed for over a year.
This got the attention of other Businessmen including Atedo Peterside who said: “Allowing legitimate exporters & importers to move their goods across the border should be a no-brainer. Why refuse everybody else & allow only one company (Dangote)?
“This is why some of us argue that the Nigerian economy is rigged in favour of a handful of well-connected persons,” he added.
Attached to the document where the details of the drivers and Truck license numbers.
The larger picture
Granting waivers for export suggests the government is willing to open borders even if it is for export purposes rather than stick to a policy that has stifled trade since it was introduced late in 2019.
- Granting the cement manufacturers, a waiver, also suggest the government will consider granting the same to other smaller Nigerian firms who are export-oriented.
- Export-oriented manufacturers have suffered losses due to the government policy on land border closure and will see this as a window of opportunity to commence exports.
- The government should, however, issue a policy guideline, rather than approve exports on a piecemeal basis which will not favour smaller exporters with little or no government connections.
- This could also be a precursor to Nigeria’s implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AFCFTA), which would require movement of goods across borders and a reduction of tariffs in trade through Africa’s borders.
Correction: An earlier version of this article erroneously said the information was first obtained in an earnings call by Dangote Cement. Rather, it was in an earnings call by BUA Cement held in July 2020.
FIRS to commence recovery of all outstanding tax debts and penalties from January 1, 2021
The FIRS has stated that it shall recover all outstanding debt with penalties and interest from January 1, 2021.
The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has disclosed that its waivers on penalties and interest on outstanding taxes arising from desk examinations, audit exercises, investigations, or all other forms of tax assessment will close on December 31, 2020.
Hence, effective from January 1, 2021 the Service shall recover all outstanding debt with penalties and interest, in accordance with the provisions of the extant tax laws.
This disclosure was made by Abdullahi Ismaila Ahmad, the Director of Communications and Liaison Department, Federal Inland Revenue Service, in a press release issued on December 2, 2020.
Consequently, the Executive Chairman, FIRS, Mr. Muhammad Nami, in a notice urged taxpayers to use the advantage of the remaining days of this month to settle their tax obligations in order to enjoy all subsisting waivers offered thereof by the Service.
The Executive Chairman in the reminder notice tagged “Public Notice on the Recovery of Outstanding Taxes from Taxpayers”, disclosed that FIRS in recent times, has issued a series of palliatives for the waivers of penalties and interest on outstanding taxes.
He explained that the Service had noticed that some taxpayers are yet to take advantage of the palliative windows opened to cushion the effect of the challenges of the economy on taxpayers.
Mr. Nami, however, called the attention of taxpayers to the last window of opportunity for the waiver of outstanding penalties and interest on all taxes collectible by the Federal Inland Revenue Service, which will close on 31st December 2020.
What they are saying
Mr. Muhammad Nami, in the reminder notice, said:
“The Service has observed that some taxpayers are yet to take advantage of the palliative windows opened to cushion the effect of the challenges of the economy on taxpayers.
“Furthermore, the Service wishes to put all taxpayers on notice that the last window of opportunity for the waiver of outstanding penalties and interest on all taxes collectible by the Federal Inland Revenue Service shall close on 31st December 2020.
“Consequently, all concerned taxpayers are hereby put on notice that after the expiration date of 31st December 2020, the Service shall recover all outstanding debt with penalties and interest, in accordance with the provisions of the extant tax laws such as ‘the power of substitution’ conferred on it by Section 31 of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (Establishment) Act 2007.”
N117 billion approved by FG for road rehabilitation
Babatunde Fashola has disclosed that the FG has approved the sum of over N117 billion for road rehabilitation across the country.
The Federal Government has approved the sum of over N117 billion for the rehabilitation of roads across the country in 2021.
This was disclosed by Babatunde Fashola, Minister of Works and Housing, in a press briefing after the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting was held in Abuja on Wednesday.
What you should know
- Nairametrics reported last month that Mr Fashola had stated that the Ministry’s priority in its 2021 budget was to complete already ongoing road and bridge projects across the nation.
- Fashola also said that the Federal Government needed at least N500 billion annually for the next 3 years to develop and fix its 35,000 kilometres road network, as work continued on 13,000 kilometres of the network.
- Fashola stated last month that the Federal Government was committed to finishing the Lagos-Ibadan expressway, adding that the drop in crude oil prices could not be a barrier to its completion.
Fashola disclosed on Wednesday that the sum of N18.9 billion, was approved for the rehabilitation of roads and bridges including the 26 km of Kano-Dambatta-Kazaure-Daura road, Anambra- Enugu Roads, Bridge construction Cross River, Nkumi bridge and others.
“The other memorandum relating to roads also is for the total sum of N98.7 billion,” he added. This includes roads and bridges in Zamfara, Kebbi, Katsina, Anambra and Kano
$1.3 billion Malabu oil field sale was perfect – Dan Etete
Nigeria’s former Petroleum Minister has said that the sale of the $1.3 billion Malabu oil field to Shell and Eni in 2021 was legally perfect.
Dan Etete, former Nigerian Minister of Petroleum has said that the $1.3 billion sales of Malabu oil field to Shell and Eni in 2021 was legally perfect, with zero traces of corruption in the deal.
He disclosed this on Wednesday through his lawyer, Antonio Secci, in a Milan Court, investigating the cases of bribery and corruption related to the deal, as reported by Reuters.
In Wednesday’s hearing, Dan Etete’s lawyers called for the former Nigerian Minister to be acquitted of corruption charges related to the deal.
Reuters disclosed that 13 other people are involved in the corruption case including CEO of Eni, Claudio Descalzi.
The accused pleaded non-guilty and said that the proceeds of the deal were paid into accounts owned by the Nigerian Government.
The ex-Shell executives also accused in the case will have a hearing on the 9th of December.
What you should know
Multinational oil companies, Eni and Shell, paid $1.3 billion in 2011 to acquire OPL 245 offshore field.
The payment was to a company called Malabu, which was owned by Nigeria’s former Oil Minister, Dan Etete.
However, Italian prosecutors claim that most of the payments were kickbacks to Nigerian government officials. Italian prosecutors also claim that nearly $1.1 billion was stolen by Nigerian politicians and middlemen, with Dan Etete keeping half.
Nigeria’s Minister of Justice, Justice Abubakar Malami, reported in July that the Dutch and Swiss governments were expected to send the sum of $200 million from the OPL 245 Malabu Oil deal to Nigeria.
Multinational Petroleum oil and gas giant, Royal Dutch Shell, announced that it would write down its investment in the controversial Malabu OPL 245 offshore field in Nigeria.
in June, the Federal Government tracked down and grounded a luxury private jet, owned by the country’s former Petroleum Minister, Dan Etete, over his alleged involvement in the $1.1 billion Malabu oil scam. The luxury private jet was alleged to have been purchased with proceeds from that oil deal.
Nairametrics reported that the Federal Government, on Wednesday, September 9, 2020, asked a court in Milan to order Royal Dutch Shell and Eni to pay the sum of $1.092 billion as an immediate advance payment for damages in the Malabu oil scandal.