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Air Peace, Customs disagree over charges

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Air Peace, Customs disagree over charges on aircraft importation.

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Air Peace and the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) are at loggerheads over collection of import duties.
Air Peace said the NCS is acting against the federal government executive order, but the Customs said otherwise.

Both parties had disagreed over import duties following the importation of Embraer E195- E2 aircraft by the airline company. Customs had placed N189 million duty charge on the aircraft.

In response to the import charge demanded by the service, Air Peace Chief Executive Officer, Allen Onyema, said the action was against the executive order which granted airlines duty and VAT-free on imported aircraft and spare parts.

But the NCS said the import charge was in line with ECOWAS Trade Liberalization Scheme (ETLS) and Comprehensive Imports Supervision Scheme (CISS), even with the existence of duty and VATad-free order.

The public relations officer of Customs, Joseph Attah, admitted the existence of the tax relief in Section 39 of the 2020 finance act, but said the import charges requested was for ETLS and CISS, not for Nigerian VAT or duty charge.

“The act grants exemptions to Customs duty and VAT only. Such imports are therefore still required to pay appropriate charges on ECOWAS Trade Liberalization Scheme (ETLS) and Comprehensive Imports Supervision Scheme (CISS).

“It was therefore in-line with the extant regulations that NCS did not collect duty and VAT on Air Peace recent import of E195-E2 with registration No. 5N-BYE but restricted itself to the collection of ETLS and CISS which amounted to the sum of N189,000,000”, Attah was quoted by The Cable.

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