Exporters’ association commends OGFZA on tariff review

Exporters’ association commends OGFZA on tariff review


The Association of Nigerian Exporters has commended the leadership of the Oil and Gas Free Zones Authority (OGFZA) for demanding a downward review of tariffs payable in the free zones. The director-general of the association, Prince Joseph Idiong, said in a statement in Abuja at the weekend that the call for a downward tariff review by OGFZA at once reflects the sensitivity of the agency to the challenges facing free zone businesses and the need for the free zones to live out their essence as a special business-friendly hub.


Prince Idiong said by the initiative on the tariff cut, Mr Umana Okon Umana, managing director of OGFZA, has shown that he is working to bring back life into the free zones and deliver badly needed succour to struggling free zone businesses.


Prince Idiong frowned upon the manner in which the contentious tariffs were fixed by NAPIMS, which is not the regulator of the free zones, adding that the ruling tariff regime is inconsistent with the Buhari administration’s change agenda that should ensure that the rule of law and due process apply universally in all aspects of public life. He argued that the current tariff regime in the free zones is illegal because it was not arrived at in accordance with section 25 of the OGFZA Act as well as sections 11 and 39 (4) of the Oil & Gas Export Free Zone Regulations 2003.


Section 11 of the Oil & Gas Export Free Zone Regulations 2003 states that “The Authority (meaning OGFZA) shall issue schedule of tariffs which shall apply in the Free Zone and which shall be reviewed from time to time and copies made available to the licensees or operators,” while section 32 (4) of the same regulation gives OGFZA the “right to review tariffs for operations in the Free Zone from time to time.”


Prince Idiong warned that the arbitrarily high tariffs in the free zones could lead to court action against the federal government, and advised that the agency of government charged with the regulation and management of the free zones, rather than an outside body, should be the authority that runs the free zones in all aspects, including the matter of tariffs.


He said for the rule of law to be seen to have taken hold the regulator of the free zones should be allowed to drive all the processes in the free zones. He explained that the Association of Nigerian Exporters is not comfortable with the meddlesomeness by outsiders in the administration of the free zones because those outsiders lack the sensitivity needed to correctly address issues that affect free zone businesses.


Recently representatives of investors in the oil and gas free zones protested the high tariffs to the free zone regulator, OGFZA, and called for a review in which the inputs of all stakeholders would be taken into account to arrive at charges that would be fair and equitable to all.


Facebook Comments

Author: Destiny Young
Destiny Young, a Senior IT Engineer, is an information technology professional with over 13 years of industry experience. A Computer Science graduate with a First Class MBA (Cybersecurity) from Nexford University, Washington DC. He holds a Master of Technology degree in Information Technology from the prestigious University of South Africa (UNISA) and currently a PhD Candidate in Information Systems with interest in Cybersecurity and Cloud technology. He is a member of the British Computer Society (BSC), the Chartered Institute of Administration of Nigeria (CIA). Nigeria Computer Society (NCS), etc.

Leave a Reply

Positive SSL Wildcard