…Expresses Concern Over Effect on Nigerians
By: ROTIMI ASHER
[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he Federal government has expressed concern over possible effect that higher duties on imported used vehicles may have on Nigerians. The Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo raised the concern on Monday after receiving briefing from the National Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC) in his office, at the State House, Abuja.
According to the Vice President, the National Automotive Industry Development Plan (NAIDP) is laudable, “as it has the capacity to grow the automotive industry.” He expressed the desire of President Buhari’s regime to ensure the goal of the policy is achieved.
Although he agreed that, for the auto policy to succeed, duties on imported used vehicles would need to go up, the Vice President urged the NADDC to first of all take steps to cushion effect of such an increase on the lives of Nigerians by introducing a comprehensive vehicle credit purchase scheme, that will enable Nigerians to afford new vehicles.
He urged the Council to “put up a strong case for the credit purchase policy, the timing of the policy and the cushion effect it may have on those who cannot afford new vehicles” while promising to take up the case with the Central Bank of Nigeria.
Also expressing concern about the spate of smuggling of used vehicles which has impacted negatively on the economy, Professor Osinbajo urged the NADDC to work with other agencies such as the Nigeria Customs as well as a soft-ware that can check the menace.
The Director General of NADDC, Engineer Aminu Jalal, who had earlier solicited for gradual increase of tariff starting with those aged up to two years, stated that the goal of the National Automotive Development Policy was to increase customs revenue without increase in prices of assembled vehicles and make investment attractive and convenient.