Group urges FG to reduce customs duty on ambulance, others

Africa Association of Professional Freight Forwarders and Logistics of Nigeria (APFFLON) has urged the federal government to reduce customs duties on ambulances, firefighter vehicles as well as agricultural equipment.

The group made the call in an open letter to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, which was made available to The Guardian yesterday.In the letter signed by the National President, APFFLON, Frank Ogunojemite, the group said the reduction of customs duties should be part of efforts to boost health services and food production in the country amid the tough economic situation.

The group said freight forwarders and stakeholders in the maritime industry as well as medical practitioners and a large number of Nigerians are concerned with the unfortunate reality of high duties levied on firefighting vehicles, ambulances and medical/agricultural equipment at a time of inflation has grossly weakened the purchasing power of the naira. He said this is because people are finding it difficult to feed as individual businesses keep shutting down.

The group said these essential vehicles and medical equipment pay the same duties as luxury vehicles. The group also lamented that it is strange that commercial vehicles are prioritised over ambulances and agricultural equipment as they are required to pay lower duties.

The maritime advocacy group said it has been observing with keen interest the numerous efforts the presidency has started putting in place and his choice of Ministers that oversee health, finance, transportation as well as marine and blue economy ministries among others.

The group said to cushion the effect of the harsh economic situation, cutting down Customs duties could serve as a palliative measure for small and medium-sized entrepreneurs in different sectors of the economy among other interventions.

The group, however, noted that the reduction of customs duties on ambulances, medical equipment and agricultural equipment could be a major accomplishment for Tinubu’s administration if considered and enacted.

The advocacy group also noted that the reduction of duties on the aforementioned items will enable hospitals and agro-businesses to thrive as it will boost food production.

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