Recently, the Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) AGOA Trade Resource Centre, Lagos, unveiled the AGOA Textile Visa Stamp.
The Textile Visa Stamp, according to the NEPC, would enable garment manufacturers in Nigeria to have tariff concession on textile and garments manufactured in the country for export to the United States under the African Growth Opportunity Act (AGOA).
In this interview with FRIDAY EKEOBA, CEO of the NEPC, Mr. Olusegun Awolowo, explained the importance and benefits of the Textile Visa Stamp to the Nigerian garment manufacturers.
Awolowo, who was represented at the Asian-African Chambers of Commerce and Industry’s inauguration in Lagos, recently, is of the opinion that the NEPC and the Nigerian Customs Service would synergise to ensure the Textile Visa Stamp is well utilised for the benefit of garment manufacturers to bring more revenue to the Nigerian government. Excerpts:
NEPC – AGOA Trade Resource Center recently organised a workshop on utilisation of the AGOA Textile Visa Stamp, can you enlighten the public on this Textile Visa Stamp?
The AGOA Textile Visa Stamp is an instrument established by the US government for use by the AGOA eligible countries for textiles and apparels export into USA.
The instrument is to be administered by the Nigerian authorised Customs Officers on the Commercial Invoice of garment manufacturers exporting to the US under AGOA. It is a major requirement for the export of textiles and garment under the scheme and has to be strictly adhered to by Nigerian garment exporters in order to benefit from the tariff concession provided by the Act.
What was the role of the Nigerian Customs at the Workshop?
The esteemed uniformed officers of the Customs were invited to the Workshop because they are the sole administrator of the Visa Stamp. The Stamp is in their custody and they need to be informed on its application and as well as interface with the Nigerian garment manufactures. More importantly, the interface facilitated expression of challenges by garment manufactures in accessing the Visa Stamp from the Customs.