In recent development, the automobile workers have kicked against the Federal government bid in reducing the vehicle duties to 10%. This was made known in a statement released by the Automobile, Boatyard, Transportation, Equipment and Allied Senior Staff Association (AUTOBATE) Secretary General, Olorunfemi Sola, who gave his concern about the implication of such slash on production. To him, the reduction of duty on vehicle duty from 25% to 10% will have serious negative impact on the domestic automobile industry. He therefore advised the Federal Government to pay more attention to the steel company, which is currently incapable of supplying enough materials for local automobile company.
In his interview with News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, Olorunfemi told them that such reduction will lead to growth in unemployment that has been prevalent in the country. Companies like TATA and Mandilas might be forced to take their market from Nigeria to other country.
Reduction of levy on imported vehicles will reduce smuggling into the country through illegal means
It was earlier reported that notable stakeholders had agitated for the reduction. The Nigerian Custom Service on an occasion persuaded the Federal Government to reduce the vehicle levy on every imported vehicle to 10% from the already stated 35%. This was also corroborated by the Lagos State Chamber of Commerce, which asked for 15% import levy from the 25% set aside by the Federal Government.
Custom Controller General, Ali Hammed on Monday at the International Custom Day (ICD), while speaking to the news conference informed the general public on their effort to influence the government policy on reducing levy on vehicles and to discourage the large diversion of importation to countries close to Nigeria. This in turn promotes smuggling of those diverted vehicles into Nigeria.
Custom Service wants reduction of 35% levy on imported vehicles
Ali Hammed admitted that the policy was to encourage local automobile industries but has been unsuccessful especially judging on the annual income and increase in rate of smuggling in the country. He then urged the Federal Government to bring it down to 10% and put the levy on brand new cars to 45% to bolster their annual revenue.