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Nigeria Customs strengthens its Rules of Origin competency through an advanced training workshop

03 junio 2024

Under the framework of the EU-WCO Rules of Origin Africa Programme, funded by the European Union, the World Customs Organization, in partnership with the Nigeria Customs Service  (NCS), held a national training workshop on rules of origin for Nigeria Customs. The workshop was held in Abuja, Nigeria, from 27 to 31 May 2024 with the objective to assist NCS in enhancing its knowledge and application of preferential rules of origin and contribute to a seamless implementation of the AfCFTA and other relevant FTAs.

This workshop was conducted as part of the comprehensive technical assistance and partnership with NCS in relation to the implementation and launch of an advance rulings system in Nigeria in May 2024, and builds on the acquis from an intermediate training conducted in January 2024. The support provided under the EU-funded RoO and HS Africa Programmes allows for the deployment of all-inclusive and wide-ranging capacity building activities, to enhance the infrastructure and capacity of NCS both on RoO and HS.

In her opening remarks, Ms Niagwan, Deputy Comptroller General, thanked the WCO and the EU for their continued support in building capacity on rules of origin and stressed that rules of origin are crucial to trade policies and that they affect every aspect from the supply chain to the market.

During the workshop, participants dug deeper into key concepts for proper origin determination, including possible flexibilities such as cumulation, tolerance rules and the absorption principle, as well as related operational and procedural issues, including origin certification and verification. Case studies allowed the participants to detangle the spaghetti bowl of rules of origin in various free trade agreements applicable in Nigeria. Participants also had the opportunity to observe the practical application and management of rules of origin through field visits to two producers of originating products and to discuss how NCS can further support economic operators trading under preferential trade agreements.

The EU-WCO Rules of Origin Africa Programme will continue its work with Nigeria Customs to equip Customs officials with extended knowledge for efficient implementation and application of rules of origin. As a next step, the Programme will conduct a training of trainers which will enable Customs to further cascade their knowledge to colleagues as well as to other relevant stakeholders.

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