By Dapo Olawuni
Nigeria has been said to be among the lowest in ranking in the Logistics Performance Index (LPI), having been identified as low as 110 our of the 116 countries on the LPI ranking, putting her bellow other African countries like Keyan and Ghana.
This was disclosed by the Registrar, Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN), Barr. Sam Nwakohu, who spoke at the 2019 National annual Bonded Terminal/Logistics Conference held at Rockview Hotel, Apapa, Lagos recently.
The CRFFN registrar was represented at the one-day conference by Mrs Florence Egbuna, a Senior Training Officer at the council who spoke on the topic: “The Role of CRFFN in Cargo Movement and Logistics as a Regulator of the Freight Forwarding in Nigeria”
Speaking, he said “The Logistics Performance Index (LPI) developed by World Bank measures the efficiency of international supply chains by providing feedback on the logistics friendliness of country. Nigeria is however performing very low, having been identified as number 110 out of the 166 countries on the rank putting her bellow other African countries like Keya, Ghana etc. In addition, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) identified Nigeria as the most active West African country in trade”
The council further added: “76% of shipping activities undertaken in the whole of West Africa is done in Nigeria but yet the Country ranks low in the quality of trade. Some identified causes of low performance include the costs and speed of clearance processes. On this note, the council is appealing to all practitioners, stakeholders, port operators and users to cooperate with the council in addressing these challenges. Participation in the council range of programmes will raise skills and competence and moreover empower the freight forwarders with the required capacity to fast track cargo movement”.
The LPI programme is a programme developed by the World Bank to measure the efficiency of international supply chains by providing feedback on the logistics friendliness of a country.
Logistics which was said to be a major component of the supply chain and is also is crucial to economic development of a nation.
The Registrar noted that the council was established by Act No. 16 of 2007 of the National Assembly; as a regulatory agency under the supervision of the Federal Ministry of Transportation.
He equally told the participants that the council is charged with responsibility to regulate and control the practice of freight forwarding and promote the highest standard of competent, practice and conduct amongst members of the profession.
The registrar however, defined who a freight forwarder is and his strategic roles before the audience, informing them that according to section 30 of the CRFFN Act, a freight forwarder is “any person or company who arranges the carriage or movement of goods and associated formalities on behalf of an importer or exporter along the international boundaries of seaports, cargo airports or land border station”.
This year’s annual bonded terminal conference which came with the theme: “Private Bonded Terminal: A Key Player in Cargo Distribution Logistics Management Chain in Nigeria and with sub-topics handled by various speakers and agencies.
Barr. Nwakohu disclosed that the Council has since in line with and in compliance with the Act developed a register of all freight forwarders in the country, grouping then into two major categories; the individual (staff and executive) and the corporate (companies and freight providers) freight forwarders.
On the role of CRFFN in cargo distribution/movement and logistics, the council pointed out that the ability of a country to provide and deliver goods and services on time and at an affordable cost is a major indicator of their level of participation in the global competitive economy.
Basically, the registrar further hinted, “freight forwarding is a trade facilitation activity that ensures that goods are moved across the international borders at low cist, in the right way at the right time and in accordance with existing and relevant regulations”
The registrar equally disclosed that from 2021 “the Act will restricts the participation of freight forwarders without the requisite education and skills from engaging in the movement of goods by 2021 anyone without the relevant qualification s will not be allowed to continue practice”.
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