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Guidelines for Importers
Temporary Importation (T.I)
HSE Policy
Calculation of Import Duty
What is Form M?
Ports & Airports in Nigeria
Shipping Lines & Agents
ASYCUDA Registration
NAFDAC Reg. (Food/Pharm)
NEPA Import Permit
NAFDAC Reg. (Chemicals)

The Nigeria Customs Service may provide the concession to import on temporary basis. Such concession are normally granted for oil rigs, ships, barges and other special equipment of high value( In practice USD 100,000 has been considered as a minimum by customs), provided that such equipment is not available for purchase/rent in Nigeria. Temporary importation is not available for consumable items and most vehicles. For other commodities, prior clarification should be obtained from Customs Head Office at Abuja.

The temporary importation approval from customs Headquarters Abuja must be obtained prior to shipment. Goods imported under Temporary Importation are exempted from both the Form M and pre-shipment inspection procedures.

The following documents are required to accompany any T.I Application:

Proforma Invoice from the owner to the Nigeria importer, stating the cost and freight of the items to be imported
Lease Agreement between the owner of the equipment and the Nigeria importer, specifying the equipment, the lease period, the lease cost and other lease conditions.
- Brochures and / or technical manuals describing the item(s) to be imported.
- Photocopy of registration certificate ( vessels & rigs only)
- § Photocopy of measurement certificate (vessels & rigs only)
- Permit to operate in Nigerian waters from the Federal Ministry of Transport (can be obtained by RONISH)
- Photocopy of the complete contract(s) between the importer and the main contractor, clearly indicating the duration of the contract and providing information about the purpose of the equipment to be temporary imported. The contract must further show the signatories. Where there is no direct contract between the Nigerian company holding the main contract with the government or NNPC (OML holder), and the importer of the item, all contracts with sub-contractors must be included to establish the link.
- Photocopy of importer’s tax clearance certificate for the past three years
- Photocopy of importer’s certificate of incorporation
- Letter from importer addressed to RONISH, requesting RONISH to apply for temporary importation, thereby stating the reasons for temporary importation.
- Covering letter to Customs applying for T.I. approval on behalf of client


Upon receipt of the documents mentioned above, RONISH issues an application to the Comptroller General of Nigeria Customs Service, Abuja. A minimum bond amount is fixed by Customs Headquarters and is indicated on the formal T.I approval letter. Following the submission of the T.I approval to the Customs Area Comptroller at the port of entry, the cargo will be physically examined and the bond amount will be fixed as surety.

Please, observe that this procedure will take approximately 4 weeks just for the approval from Customs Headquarters Abuja. It is therefore advisable that preliminary documentation is given to RONISH as early as possible to have enough time for the application.

Bond Security

Normally the security amount or otherwise called “bond penalty” corresponds to the customs duty / surcharge and VAT payable upon normal importation plus approximately 25%. The penalty can however be assessed differently at the discretion of the Customs Area Comptroller. Prior to the release of the cargo by the customs administration, security for the customs duty has to be provided through a bond issued by one of the banks designated for the collection of Customs duties. Insurance bond are not accepted by Customs and cash deposits are not recommended.


A Temporary Importation is approved for an initial period of one year and can be extended by RONISH at Customs Headquarters Abuja twice for six months. The maximum total period of a temporary importation is two years and extensions beyond that period are granted by Customs exceptionally on a case by case basis only for further period of three or six months.

Documentary requirements for extension of T.I approval:

Photocopy of agreement(addendum) jointly signed by contractor and sub-contractor specifying that contract is still under execution and stating the duration of the contract. Please, note that variation of contract / service agreement is not acceptable. Also, note that the agreement/contract (addendum) should not be in months as in past similar cases.
Photocopy Form Sale 33
- · Photocopy of initial T.I. approval or last execution (if any)
- Photocopy of registration certificate ( vessels & rigs only)
- Covering letter to Customs applying for extension of T.I
- Letter from insurance / bank confirming validity of bond, copy of bond to be attached.


After completion of the contract, cargo earlier imported on a temporary basis can be re-exported. Your instruction to that effect should be given to RONISH who will make the necessary arrangement, either by air or sea. RONISH will also the export Bill of Entry as well as export documentation, which later on will be required for the cancellation of the temporary importation bond.

Change to importation for home consumption

In case cargo imported temporary will remain in Nigeria permanently, an approval from Customs Headquarters Abuja is required. Before selling the goods to a third party in Nigeria, approval must be obtained and an entry for home use is to be processed with the Customs at the initial port of entry. Duty/Surcharge and VAT applicable at the time of importation are payable at that point.

This procedure also applies to items covered under a T.I. which have been scrapped.

Cancellation of Temporary Importation Bond

To cancel a temporary importation bond, RONISH has to show evidence to the Nigeria Customs Service that the cargo has been either re-exported or customs cleared for home consumption. If the Nigeria Customs Service is satisfied with the documentary evidence, the bond will be cancelled with a letter from customs to the bond-issuing bank, with copy to the clearing agent.

The importer in whose name the T.I. was granted by Customs will be held responsible for the full regularisation or re-exportation of the equipment at all times, a T.I. is not transferable.


RONISH will offer advice on whether a T.I. of an item is likely to be approved by the Nigeria Customs Service. RONISH does, however not guarantee that approval will be granted and will undertake no responsibility whatsoever for any consequences, financial or otherwise, resulting from a rejection of the T.I. application by Customs.

RONISH obtains T.I. approvals from the Nigeria Customs Service as Agents only on behalf and for the account of the importer. The Nigeria Customs Service tends to hold agents accountable for proper regularization of T.I. processed and obtained by them on behalf and for account of importers and RONISH therefore holds the importer liable for any consequences, financial or otherwise , related to non-renewal of an expired T.I., non-exportation or non-payment of duty in case of consumption for home use.




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