Economist and Managing Director (CEO) of the Center for the Promotion of Private Enterprise (CPPE), Dr Muda Yusuf has called for the phasing out of e-invoicing and e-valuation systems introduced by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) , saying: it will make an already bad process of international trade transactions worse. According to Yusuf, the policy will increase transaction costs, increase bureaucracy, increase uncertainty, intensify trade disruptions, weaken investor confidence and increase the risk of corruption. He pointed out that there is a strong correlation between bureaucracy and corruption.
On January 21, the CBN had announced its intention to begin the operationalization of the e-Valuator and the e-Invoice; Saying that, all import and export transactions will require the submission of an electronic invoice authenticated by licensed Concessionaire Banks on Nigeria’s One Stop Portal – Trade Monitoring System (TRMS).
According to the circular issued by the apex bank, the new regulations were mainly aimed at obtaining an accurate value of import and export items to and from Nigeria.
Yusuf, who is the former Managing Director of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), said that “CBN’s growing foray into the trade policy space is an aberration in our system of economic management and a serious source of concern for the company. community. Import valuation and classification matters are statutory functions of the Nigeria Customs Service, with the Ministry of Finance being the supervisory body.
“The CBN’s decision to now undertake price assessment and benchmarking of imported and exported commodities duplicates the statutory responsibility of the Nigeria Customs Service. This will create an additional regulatory compliance burden and cost for the business community. »
He advised the CBN to work with Nigeria Customs to fill any gaps in the valuation processes, rather than setting up a parallel institutional framework.
Yusuf also said that more than 80% of the faults in foreign exchange management are the result of the current distortions created by the current exchange rate policy regime, in particular the administrative fixing of the exchange rate.