There had been a lot of arguments about the effects of Nigeria’s border closure on the economy of Nigeria and the affected countries. The Nigerian government closed the Land Borders of Nigerian after it was announced about two months ago. The Buhari administration had said, his decision is aimed at controlling smuggled goods brought into the country and also to severe trade with these countries. The country is making efforts to engage in informal sales of goods produced within the country. The informal trade aims at promoting farmers and manufacturers of other products in the country as a way of boosting the country’s economy. Goods such as Rice were usually brought into the country, and this distorted the sales of locally made rice. Since the close of the lander borders, Nigerians have resolved to purchase of local rice, and Rice Mills has become active in different parts of the country such as Onyx Rice Mill Bida, Abakeliki Rice Mill, Anambra Rice Mill, etc. Also, there were poultry meats, drugs, vegetable oils, used cars, and other banned items mostly brought into the country illegally.
Effects Of Border Closure On Nigeria’s Neighbouring Countries.
Some have criticized this approach because of the effects the border closure could have on neighboring countries such as the Benin Republic, Togo, and Cameroon. Privately owned businesses within the country would not be spared of these effects since there would be no importation by land borders. Most of these business owners depend on goods brought into Nigeria through the Seme border and other borders. Benin had the strategy of serving as a trading hub, where importation and exportation of products into Nigeria are done legally and illegally most times, thereby profiting from distorting Nigeria’s economy. The closure of Nigerian land borders has so much effect on trade between Nigeria and its neighboring countries, but the most affected are Benin, which had seme border. There had been reports of goods seized at Seme border by Nigeria custom officials such as Vegetables, Tomatoes, and other consumables getting rotten in their containers. Some persons had been caught in the act of smuggling at different land borders around the country.
There are those who have commended the efforts of the government towards promoting locally made goods because they believe this move from the government would give birth to firms and industries. And also, this move would protect the country from all sorts of substandard goods being imported into the country via land borders.
What The President Of Nigeria Says About Border Closure;
Buhari had said: “Now that our people in the rural areas are going back to their farms, and the country has saved huge sums of money which would otherwise have been expended on importing rice using our scarce foreign reserves, we cannot allow smuggling of the product at such alarming proportions to continue.” pulse.ng/…-border-was-closed
The Comptroller-General of Customs, Col Hameed Ali (Rtd), has also just announced that the land borders will remain closed pending when Benin and other neighboring African countries stop taking Nigeria for a smuggling destination.
Ali had added that the closure would remain in place until neighboring countries duly comply with the ECOWAS (Economic Community of West African States) protocols on the transit of goods.
The border closure is only a temporary measure from Nigeria because the Air and Seas are open for importations; only the land borders are affected. The Nigerian government says as soon as the affected countries prove willing to curb smuggling, the borders will be reopened for legitimate business between Nigeria and the affected countries. The country is gradually moving back to Agriculture, and not solely depend on Oil. Therefore it is making efforts to promote locally produced food and ensuring the safety and well being of its people through the regulation of goods imported into the country by land borders.