From Walter Ukaegbu, Abuja
THE Director General of National Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC), Mr. Aminu Jalal, has disclosed that the Federal Government has spent about N5 billion in the establishment of world-class automotive test laboratories for emission, components and materials.
Jalal made the disclosure when the Comptroller General of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Hameed Ali, paid him a courtesy visit recently in Abuja.
Jalal, who disclosed that the council has developed an electronic online solution to the problem of smuggling and goods diversion on the imposition of protective tariff and levy, further decried the fact that most Nigerians are excluded from automotive credit purchase schemes by commercial banks.
His words: “Most Nigerians, including workers, haulage and passenger commercial vehicles operators are excluded from automotive credit purchase schemes by existing commercial banks.”
However, he stated that the Nigerian Automotive Industry Development Plan (NAIDP) makes provision for the application of the 35 per cent levies collected on imported FBU cars as soft loans to boost demand for made in Nigeria vehicles.
While further briefing the Customs delegation led by the Comptroller General, on the status and components of NAIDP, Jalal stated that the emphasis of the Federal Government has now shifted to the development of automotive local content, adding that their capacity utilisation is about 20 per cent due to some reasons which include the process of certification, which he described as “most difficult and fraught with bureaucratic delays.
The NADDC Director General therefore urged the management of Customs to designate an officer or NCS team to work with NADDC to ensure smooth implementation of the policy and proper information dissemination to stakeholders.
He noted that the NAIDP represents additional revenue for government and extensive social value but that effort must be made to control smuggling and goods diversion.
Source : SunOnline