The Nigerian Federal Government has granted approval for the reopening of the Seme land border to facilitate the importation of vehicles. The announcement was made by Ibrahim Musa, the Director of Road Transport in the Ministry of Transportation, during a meeting between officials of Nigeria and the Benin Republic on June 21, 2023.
The decision to reopen the border came in response to complaints from freight forwarders operating at the Seme border, who advocated for the restoration of smooth trade and movement of goods and services.
Musa explained that the former Minister of State for Transportation had taken note of the freight forwarders’ plea and directed the preparation of a memo requesting the reactivation of the border. This memo was subsequently considered and sent to the government for review.
Dera Nnadi, the Customs Area Controller of the Seme Border Command, also expressed concerns about the decline in revenue since the suspension of vehicle imports through land borders by the previous administration. However, Nnadi expressed optimism, stating that the former Minister of Transportation had promised to present the stakeholders’ requests to the Federal Executive Council (FEC). He confirmed that the Ministry had informed them that the memo had been written, adopted by FEC, and would be handed over to the new government. Nnadi assured stakeholders that their requests had been well-received.
The reopening of the Seme land border for vehicle imports is expected to facilitate trade and contribute to increased revenue generation. This decision reflects the government’s commitment to addressing the concerns of stakeholders and promoting the seamless movement of goods and services between Nigeria and the Benin Republic.