By Godwin Oritse
A group, NationalÂ Council of Managing Directors of Licensed Customs Agents (NCMDLCA) has thrown its weight behind the newly introduced Cargo Tracking Note(CTN) saying that â€œit would achieve a dual purpose of national security and collection of levies and taxesâ€.
In a report by the groupâ€™s President, Mr Lucky Amiwero, said the CTN is one of the important measures the International Maritime Organization (IMO) has adopted to secure ports and cargoes all over the world.
Amiwero stated that Cargo security programme developed after the September 11 2001 attack on the United States, emphasized on the provision of advance tracking and screening of cargo both from the country of origin to destination which was adopted globally due to the threat on the supply chain.
He posited that CTN representÂ an additional layer of security to ensure goods reach their destinations in the same condition, adding that this includes processes and system to determine the location of goods and help ensure that their location is consistent with what is authorized.
The seasoned freight forwarder noted that CTN covers the need for identification, statistics, transport, control, safety and traceability of the consignment.
â€œCargo security provision under the International Maritime Organization (IMO) acknowledge the importance of the maritime sector to international trade, the IMO established new security measures following the event of 9/11 to ensure the safety of maritime ports and cargoes.
Tracking of cargo allows for advanced processing of information by border and intelligence agencies and assist in defeating the vulnerability associated with inland voyage, the information can be aggregated to create a comprehensive picture of traffic within the moving systemâ€ he stated.
Amiwero further explained their initial opposition against the introduction of the CTN was out of ignorance, adding after a month of painstaking research, he discovered that more than eighty-five percent of the countries in the world have adopted the cargo tracking regime.
He advised that it will be in the best interest of Nigeria, particularly its maritime industry to adopt the CTN with a view to securing not only the nationâ€™s Ports but Nigerian bound cargoes.
He disclosed some African countries have adopted this regime as far back as 2003, noting that it will be too dangerous for Nigeria to lag considering its position in Africa.
Some of the country currently adopting the CTN regime includes the United States, Canada, Kenya, Uganda, Ghana, Togo, Angola Gabon, China, France, Coteâ€™Ivoire, Republic of Benin and Republic of Cameroon.