If you are a car dealer and are tired of the 35% tariff on imported cars, you are not alone as the authorities also believe it has not been much of a solution.

In fact, the Comptroller-General of Customs, Col Hameed Ali (retd.) has called on the Federal Government to reduce the 35% levy on imported vehicles.

Ali believes this will check the rising cases of smuggled vehicles into the country.

Already the Nigeria Customs Service had made a proposal to the Ministry of Finance on the need for a reduction in the 35% levy on imported vehicles.

Ali said currently, any new vehicle imported into the country attracted an import duty of 35% and an additional levy of 35%.

This, he noted, brought the total duty payable on such a vehicle to about 70%.

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He described the 70% being charged by the government as high, adding that time had come for it to be reduced.

In achieving this, he said, the government could still retain the 35% import duty while the additional 35% levy could be tinkered by bringing it downwards.

He said, “First, we must understand the fact that smuggling in most cases did not really occur because of the tariff that is placed on goods in Nigeria.

“When we talk about vehicles, yes, new vehicles attract 70% duty; that is 35% duty and 35% levy but most of the vehicles that are being smuggled through our borders are not new vehicles, they are used vehicles.

“And the value is calculated based on the year of make and other attributes. So, the motivating factor that gets people to move these goods to our neighbouring countries is with the sole aim of smuggling them into Nigeria."

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