FG licences 13 export warehouse operators to tackle supply chain constraints

The federal government has issued licences to thirteen Domestic Export Warehouse (DEW) operators across all geopolitical zones in the country. The government’s move is aimed at addressing supply chain constraints in export of non-oil products and enhancing competitiveness.

The DEW is a recent initiative by the Nigerian government designed to significantly reduce the cost of doing business for micro, small and medium exporting companies. It is also to serve as a one-stop transit facility/terminal, where pre-shipment activities — packaging/labelling, aggregation, fumigation, pre-shipment inspection — of non-oil export designated consignments are done in preparation for transportation and eventual shipment to export destinations.

Ezra Yakusak, executive director/CEO, Nigeria Export Promotion Council (NEPC) who said this in Abuja on Monday during the presentation of letters to four approved operators and one aggregation centre, explained that the initiative is a practical solution to issues relating to logistics and timely delivery of non-oil export.

“We gave letters to nine approved DEW members and today, it’s another batch of four, making thirteen, ” he said, while informing that two of warehouses are ready for full commissioning and operations ”

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Yakusak, also explained that the aggregation centre serve as collection points where farmers, suppliers and merchants collectively deliver their agricultural produce and the exporter will aggregate, sort, grade/standardize to required grades or sizes to meet required export order quantity before proceeding to the DEW.

He announced that the federal road safety commission has approved special plate numbers fir all DEW vehicles.

The NEPC Boss further disclosed that the N375 billion export expansion grant also designed to facilitate export of non-oil products is yet to disbursed; explaining that the grant is yet to be

“Two weeks ago the ministry of finance wrote a letter to the president to send the export expansion grant to the national assembly for approval, once the president approves, the expansion grant will be sent to national seemly for approval,’ he explained.

One of the licenced DEW operators in Abia state, Eze Uzuegbu reiterated the importance of export warehouses to ensure that Nigerian made goods are not rejected in the international market . He cited instances o where palm kernel produced in the Southeast and exported to Europe where rejected.

“We need to process our products so as to meet the global standard,” he stressed.

Earlier in her welcome address, Obidike Evelyn, Director Trade information said the licencing of DEW operatorsConfirms the readiness of the federal govenrnent and the NEPC to out in place a system that facilitate seamless trade and ease of doing business particularly for the small and medium enterprises.

She added that the DEW initiative will support federal government’s mandate to drive bin-oil export and diversify the economy.