Nigeria: Freight fees payable to NIMASA

Port news

Published: 10 March 2014

Members should be aware of a recent investigation launched by NIMASA (the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency) which is responsible for the collection of a three percent charge on freight paid on every cargo imported into or exported from Nigeria.

This investigation is in particular for vessels trading domestically in oil fields and to and from crude oil terminals in Nigeria.

If Members are in any way involved in the domestic carriage of petroleum products in Nigeria then they need to be aware of this new initiative and how they should respond, in order to avoid possible delays, detention and fines.

The freight charges are usually paid on behalf of charterers to NIMASA through the local agents, who must have submitted an advance manifest stating the type, origin and quantity of the cargo.

The kinds of information that may be sought as part of these investigations include confirmation of:

  1. payment of NIMASA 3% freight dues
  2. loading and full discharging of cargo
  3. type of cargo carried and the terminals involved

Part of these investigations is to verify whether any unlawful carriage or trade may have been undertaken.

The investigation period may go back as far as 2007.

It is important for ongoing trade for members to ensure that charterers ensure the agents pay the freight fees and provide the NIMASA receipts for such payments.

Members who are active, or have been active, in this trade, may need to be ready to address queries raised by NIMASA.

In case of further queries, Members are asked to contact the Association.

The Association is grateful to Femi Awogbade of Africa P & I, Lagos, Nigeria/ETIC sas for contributing to this advisory.