Press Release: Rice Imports Remain Banned Through The Land Borders – NCS



Our attention has been drawn to publications on various online
platforms indicating that the Nigeria Customs Service has reversed the
ban on Rice importation through the land borders. These reports were
attributed to a press interview purportedly granted by the Service
Public Relations Officer, Deputy-Comptroller Wale Adeniyi.

2. It has become necessary to re-state the true position in view of the
confusion which these online publications may create in the industry.
It is even more expedient to provide this clarification given that the
fact that the Service has taken a firm position earlier in the week
through a joint press conference with Stakeholders.

3. First, we
would like to reiterate the position that importation of Rice remains
banned through our Land Borders, and we have the commitment of Partner
Government Agencies and Stakeholders to enforce this restriction. While
this restriction is in force, Rice imports through the Ports are still
allowed subject to payment of extant charges.
4. It is equally
important to restate the confidence of the Nigeria Customs Service in
the ability of Nigerian Rice Producers to fill the existing sufficiency
gaps in the supply of the product. The Service has noted with
satisfaction the ongoing Rice Revolution undertaken by many State
Governments, and Strategic Interventions by Federal Government Agencies.
The Service is convinced that the bumper harvests expected from these
efforts will address the supply gap in 2017. It is our belief that
continuous waste of scarce forex on a commodity that can be produced
locally makes no economic sense, most especially at a period of
recession. The Service will therefore advocate a total Ban on Rice
Importation into Nigeria with effect from 2017.

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5. It is
worrisome that the publications that resurfaced this weekend were being
attributed to a Press interview granted in October 2015. We strongly
suspect that some powerful forces behind Rice Smuggling are at work,
recycling an old report under a different circumstance to create
confusion. We urge Nigerians to watch out for similar antics as the firm
stand on Rice smuggling will pitch their selfish interest against our
national interest.
Wale Adeniyi
Public Relations Officer
For: Comptroller-General of Customs

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