As the high import tariff regime aimed at discouraging imports and spurring local assembly failed to achieve its purpose, 500,000 units of used vehicles valued at N575billion ($1.15billion) have been ferried to Nigeria in one year.
The amount is 14.37 per cent of the $8billion spent on the importation of used vehicles into the country annually.
This is coming as two terminals at Tin Can Island Port- Five Stars Logistics and Port and Terminal Multi-services Limited (PTML)-are expected to take delivery of 550 units of used vehicles this week.
Data obtained from the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA)’s shipping position indicates that Glovis Clipper is expected to berth with 250units at Five Stars Logistic, while Repubblica Del Brasile will be moored with 300 units.
In May 2021, eight vessels also offloaded 2,850 units of used vehicles at PTML with Republican Argentina led by 300units, while Grande Morocco and Grand Lagos discharged 350 units and 400units respectively.
Also, 2,200 units were offloaded in February, 2021 by Grande Tema with 400 units; Grande Dakar, 400units; Grande Abidjan, 400units and Grande Senegal, 300 units, Grande Lagos, 400 units and Grande Argentina, 300 units.
Other vessels are Grande Cameroon with 350units; Gral. Sal Martin, 400units; Grande Abidjan, 400units; Grande Togo, 350units and Grande Senegal, 300 units. According to the National Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC), Nigeria spends about $8 billion each year on imported vehicles.
In 2019 findings from international Trade Administration (ITA)’s vehicles statistics revealed that 666,748 units of vehicles were also shipped into the country, leading to a decline of 25.1 per cent in one year.
Also, the United States Census Bureau (USCB) said that America exported more than $158 million worth of vehicle spare parts and accessories to Nigeria in 2019, noting that half of Nigeria’s imports of used trucks, especially the Mack brand worth $105 million in the period.
It would be recalled that National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) had explained that Nigeria imported about N140billion of used vehicles in the first quarter of 2021 and N150 billion in the fourth quarter of 2020.
It was revealed that the Ports and Terminal Multi-services Limited (PTML) took delivery of 269,000 units or 65.53per cent of the 410,443 units that entered the country between 2017 and 2018.
Total global vehicles importation into the country was $2.24billion in 2018 and $5.63billion in 2019.
Meanwhile, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS)’s adoption of more stringent diesel and petrol fuel specifications has not been addressed in Nigeria.
West African countries had set aside January 1, 2021 and January 1, 2024 to tackle the issue of older, poorly maintained, high polluting diesel engines shipping tnto the their domain.
It would be recalled that the Minister Of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, had said that import duty for cars would still remain at 35 per cent, saying that what had been reduced was levy from 35 per cent to five per cent.
She explained: “For cars, the import duty is still 35 per cent, what has been reduced is the levy from 35 per cent to five per cent. So, there is still an import duty and levy of 40 per cent on cars.
This is still the highest within the west African region. “For tractors, mass transit vehicles, the change was from 35 per cent to five per cent and 10 per cent respectively and for trucks for movement of goods from 35 per cent to 10 per cent as well.
So, it’s not a blanket removal, and then we remove the levies as well but the import duties are still there for all of the classes of the vehicles except that they are there at a reduced rate.”