Imported used cars with trim features to attract additional charges – Customs

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Aside from ensuring car importers make adequate payments for the various vehicles they import into the country, the Nigerian Customs Service has also noted that the payment of car importation tariff will also include trim features.

The new development was made public by the National Public Relations Officer, Abdullahi Maiwada who noted that in addition to passing through the VIN valuation process, cars with trim levels must be thoroughly examined at the valuation seat to guarantee fairness and accuracy.

According to the government agency, the goal is to ensure fairness for all importers bringing vehicles into the country. The reason is that trim levels of vehicles determine the level of configuration, features and equipment in the vehicle.

Vehicle trim levels come in Base, Sport, Limited Edition, Premium, and Luxury. They distinguish the version of a vehicle, its technological advancement, interior and exterior features, and in most cases, the engine type and size available in the vehicle.

In his statement, the Nigerian Customs Service PRO explained that the goal is “to ensure fairness and accuracy,” he added stating, “The NCS mandates that imported used vehicles with trim numbers undergo valuation at the Valuation Seat after a thorough examination. This process aims to establish the vehicle’s appropriate and precise Customs value.”

He equally reminded car importers in the country that the VIN evaluation remains operational. However, Customs Licensed Agents have spoken against the new development stating that it will only result in the Customs Service compromising the VIN valuation compliance procedure. This was voiced by Babatunde Mukaila, the sole administrator of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) National Secretariat, who said the procedure would only bring back the manual process of car valuation in the country.