Ask Nigeria Header Logo

Customs design AEO program to promote trade

Photo of author

By Usman Oladimeji

Nigeria Customs can effectively tackle trade-related challenges with AEO.

The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has announced a program called Authorized Economic Operators (AEO) to improve trade facilitation in the country. Speaking during a stakeholder meeting in Abuja, Adewale Adeniyi, the Comptroller-General of Customs (CGC) stated that the program aims to increase efficiency and predictability by promoting partnerships between the NCS, Other Government Agencies (OGAs), and industry experts. The captain of Customs stressed the importance of having a resolute commitment to collaborate in order to shift the way business is conducted in and around ports in Nigeria.

This program impacts all key players within the industry, including exporters, importers, government agencies, regulatory bodies, customs, and various other stakeholders. By doing so, the agency can effectively tackle trade-related challenges. In February 2024, the NCS introduced a Time Release Study (TRS) as part of their efforts to enhance the trading process in Nigeria. Adeniyi reassured stakeholders that Nigeria Customs is fully dedicated to ensuring the success of the pilot program for AEO. He emphasized that the agency is actively progressing towards implementing the Authorized Economic Operator program, slated to commence on April 15, 2024.

All planned pilot projects are designed to streamline procedures.

He further elaborated on the goals of the trial program, which included assessing how well the AEO program could be integrated into the Nigeria Customs Service and gathering input from important stakeholders. Furthermore, all planned pilot projects are designed to pinpoint any obstacles, streamline procedures, and set the stage for a comprehensive launch of the AEO program. He expressed optimism that the Service would prioritize promoting transparency, inclusivity, and collaboration, all while ensuring that the program adheres to global standards in its designs and implementation.

Awa Nnenna, the head Customs officer and project manager of the Authorized Economic Operator, mentioned that the initial stage of the initiative aims to simplify Customs procedures while maintaining transparency and inclusivity in accordance with global norms. Awa highlighted that the main advantages of the AEO scheme are quicker Customs processing and the fostering of a relationship built on trust between Customs officials and approved operators. The program is designed to boost economic growth by streamlining trade processes.

AEO will transform the conversation around trade in the nation.

Charles Odii, the Director-General of the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN), expressed his appreciation for the proactive efforts of the Nigeria Customs Service in connecting with small business owners through the AEO program. Odii expressed his dedication to backing the AEO program, highlighting its potential to boost Nigeria’s GDP and Foreign Exchange reserves. He stressed the significance of providing opportunities for local entrepreneurs, especially small and medium-sized enterprises, to take part in and reap the rewards of these endeavours.

Odii expressed belief that this program has the potential to empower small and medium enterprises to boost their investments and take advantage of the opportunities provided by the AEO window. Furthermore, he noted that the program will not only simplify trade procedures but also transform the conversation around trade in the nation, leading to a more favourable setting for the expansion and progress of businesses. Mr. Pius Akutah, CEO of the Nigeria Shippers Council, praised the NCS for their initiative and affirmed the council’s dedication to supporting and guaranteeing the triumph of the programme.

Related Article: FG launches its trade policy for 2023-2027

Furthermore, the AEO program has been a valuable asset for customs agencies and their collaborators, offering various advantages in customs, business, and global aspects. AEOs are identified as low-risk in terms of customs processes and receive perks like quicker clearance, fewer inspections, and simpler access to customs procedures. This program aims to boost security in supply chains and streamline lawful trade. The Nigerian Custom Services had earlier in August 2023, introduced the AEO compliance platform to enhance trade facilitation, mitigate risks, and provide other various advantages.

Related Link

Wikipedia: Website

The content on is given for general information only and does not constitute a professional opinion, and users should seek their own legal/professional advice. There is data available online that lists details, facts and further information not listed in this post, please complete your own investigation into these matters and reach your own conclusion. accepts no responsibility for losses from any person acting or refraining from acting as a result of content contained in this website and/or other websites which may be linked to this website.

Fact Checking Tool -