Nigeria Finance Act 2020: Impact on International Trade and Customs Duties


The Nigeria Finance Act of 2020 introduced several significant changes in the realm of international trade and customs duties. As an emerging economy with a growing global presence, Nigeria recognized the importance of aligning its trade policies to enhance competitiveness, foster economic growth, and attract foreign investment. In this article, we will explore the key provisions of the Nigeria Finance Act 2020 that impact international trade and customs duties, and their implications for businesses engaged in cross-border transactions.

1. Introduction of Import Duty Rebates for Raw Materials

In a move to promote domestic manufacturing and industrialization, the Nigeria Finance Act 2020 introduced import duty rebates for certain raw materials used in local production. By granting duty exemptions on specific raw materials, the Act aims to reduce production costs for manufacturers, making locally produced goods more competitive both in domestic and international markets. This initiative is particularly beneficial for Nigerian industries reliant on imported inputs, encouraging them to source materials locally and stimulate economic growth.

2. Expansion of Export Incentives

The Act further expanded export incentives to encourage non-oil exports and diversify the Nigerian export base. Export-oriented businesses can now benefit from various tax incentives, including tax holidays, duty drawback schemes, and VAT exemptions on exported goods and services. These incentives aim to increase the competitiveness of Nigerian exports in the global market and attract foreign investment to bolster export-oriented industries.

3. Introduction of Customs Single Window

To streamline trade processes and enhance efficiency, the Nigeria Finance Act 2020 introduced the Customs Single Window (CSW) system. This system serves as a centralized platform for electronic submission and processing of trade-related documents and information, reducing bureaucratic red tape and expediting customs clearance procedures. The CSW aims to facilitate faster cargo processing, reduce dwell times at ports, and improve overall trade facilitation, making Nigeria a more attractive destination for international trade and investments.

4. Digitalization of Customs Procedures

With the Act’s emphasis on technology, customs procedures have been digitalized to improve transparency, reduce corruption, and expedite trade transactions. Online payment systems for customs duties and fees, electronic declarations, and risk-based inspections are among the technological advancements introduced. These digitalization efforts promote efficiency and minimize physical interactions, making cross-border trade more seamless and facilitating compliance for businesses engaged in international transactions.

5. Tariff Harmonization and Trade Agreements

The Nigeria Finance Act 2020 also seeks to harmonize customs tariffs and align them with international standards. By harmonizing tariffs, Nigeria aims to simplify trade procedures and improve predictability for importers and exporters. Additionally, the Act emphasizes the importance of leveraging regional and international trade agreements to enhance market access and boost cross-border trade.


The Nigeria Finance Act 2020 signifies Nigeria’s commitment to fostering a conducive environment for international trade and investment. By introducing import duty rebates for raw materials, expanding export incentives, implementing the Customs Single Window, digitalizing customs procedures, and pursuing tariff harmonization, the Act aims to enhance Nigeria’s competitiveness in the global market.

As a leading accounting firm in Nigeria, we recognize the profound impact of the Nigeria Finance Act 2020 on international trade and customs duties. We stand ready to assist businesses in navigating these changes, ensuring compliance, and maximizing the benefits of the Act’s provisions.

The Act’s focus on promoting domestic industries, diversifying exports, and enhancing trade facilitation reinforces Nigeria’s position as a strategic player in the global economy. By embracing these measures, businesses can capitalize on the opportunities presented by Nigeria’s evolving trade landscape and contribute to the nation’s economic growth and prosperity.

For professional advice on Accountancy, Transfer Pricing, Tax, Assurance, Outsourcing, Company Registration, and CAC matters, please contact Sunmola David & CO (Chartered Accountants & Tax Practitioners) at You can also reach us via WhatsApp at +2348038460036.