By Okezie Nnadi
Seven months after the Nigeria Customs Service launched the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) Valuation for clearing of imported vehicles, the service has launched a new platform which would now take care of old vehicles which are not captured under the VIN valuation (Non-standard VIN)
The Nigeria Customs announced on Thursday that, as from Monday 5th December, Non-standard VIN vehicles must now be cleared through a new platform; www.846.nigeriatradehub.gov.ng
The Customs also said that the pilot phase of the new platform is being testrun at the Tin Can Island Command, even as it added that relevant stakeholders including freight forwarders have been trained on the use of the platform.
Also report that there are vehicles which are not captured under the VIN valuation and these are often referred to as Non-standard VIN. Such vehicles are required to make use of a special code called 846.
In order to get payable values on these kind of vehicles, the clearing agents were hitherto required to write an application to the Customs Area Controller of the Command where the car is being cleared in order to get actual value to pay.
MARITME CONNECT reports that this has generated a lot of criticism and tension at the ports as clearing agents and freight forwarders lamented that the Non-standard VIN or 846 gives room for human interface and extortion by Customs officers, a development which the VIN was created to solve.
However in an apparent answer to cry of the clearing agents, the Nigeria Customs Service on 1st of December 2022 announced that it has ended the Non-standard VIN practice.
According to a circular issued by the Tin Can Island Customs Command with reference number NCS/TCIP/CAC/S.I/069/055, signed by the Customs Area Controller, Compt Kunle Oloyede
vehicles with Non-standard VIN must now be cleared through www.846.nigeriatradehub.gov.ng
The document was titled; LAUNCH OF THE ‘846’ AUTOMATED APPLICATION PROCESS
It read in part “Following the approval of the Comptroller-General of Customs for the deployment of the system for the processing of Non-standard VIN (846) application and the use of Tin Can Island Port as the Pilot site, a successful training and sensitization of stakeholders on the use of the platform was completed from 28 Nov — 1 Dec 22.
“In view of this, all applications for the use of code 846 for clearance of vehicles with Non-standard VINs in TCIP must be done through www.846.nigeriatradehub.gov.ng from Monday 5th December 2022.
“No manual application will be accepted henceforth. For further information and support, visit the Helpdesk at the Command.