Includes import documentation and other requirements for both the U.S. exporter and foreign importer.
Last Published: 6/16/2016

Nigerian port practices continue to present major obstacles to trade.  Importers report erratic application of customs regulations, lengthy clearance procedures, high berthing and unloading costs, and corruption.  Due to lack of space at Lagos ports, ships reportedly queue up for days, and in some cases weeks and months, before being able to berth and discharge their contents.  Due to delays caused by congestion and the poor condition of the port access roads, operations at Nigerian ports are among the most expensive in the world.  However, there have been reported slow but steady improvements in the goods transit process.  The Nigerian Port Authority, through public-private partnership arrangements, has undertaken rehabilitation of port terminals in Lagos and Port Harcourt, deepened water channels, upgraded common user facilities, and removed wrecks from water channels

Nigeria uses a destination inspection policy for imports.  Under this policy, all imports are inspected on arrival into Nigeria. Such actions delay the clearing process and increase costs. https://www.customs.gov.ng/Guidelines/Destination_Inspection/index.php
The Nigeria Trade Hub of the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) serves as a customs informational portal for traders. http://www.nigeriatradehub.gov.ng/Home.aspx.  The NCS Nigeria Import, Export and Transit Process Manual has been published and address many pertinent importation processes.
 
Nigeria’s Single Window Portal is a trade facilitation project of 12 Nigerian Government agencies involved in the customs clearance process.  The Single Window Portal allows traders to access customs regulations online, submit customs documents electronically, track transaction status online, and submit electronic payments. https://www.trade.gov.ng.
 
At this time, the NCS uses a Pre-Arrival Assessment Report system, which traders report to be faster than the predecessor Risk Assessment Report system.  The Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) scheme is intended to fast track cargo clearance for trusted traders and give incentives for traders to increase compliance with clearance procedures.

Prepared by our U.S. Embassies abroad. With its network of 108 offices across the United States and in more than 75 countries, the U.S. Commercial Service of the U.S. Department of Commerce utilizes its global presence and international marketing expertise to help U.S. companies sell their products and services worldwide. Locate the U.S. Commercial Service trade specialist in the U.S. nearest you by visiting http://export.gov/usoffices.


More Information

Nigeria Import Regulations Trade Development and Promotion