PROFESSOR DORA N. AKUNYILI (OFR) DIRECTOR-GENERAL (NAFDAC)
A ONE-DAY SEMINAR ON OPTIMISING OPPORTUNITIES FOR AIRFREIGHT IN NIGERIA
ORGANISED BY NIGERIAN SHIPPERS’ COUNCIL
24TH AUGUST 2006
INTRODUCTION: It gives me great pleasure to be invited to present a paper at this one day sensitization seminar with Theme Optimizing opportunities in the Airfreight industry, organized by the Nigerian Shippers Council for importers/exporters, operators regulators and other stakeholders in the Airfreight sector as part of its continuous effort to educate and sensitize shippers on useful procedures in international trade and movement of goods. The aviation industry is a vital sector in any nation s economy. It facilities the global movement of people, goods and services. It diminishes constraints of time and space for man. It is efficient and reliable and it promotes business. Abundant opportunities exist in Air freighting in Nigeria. Nigeria the giant of Africa is strategically located and has 4 international Airport Muritala Mohammed international Airport, Lagos, Aminu Kano Int l Airport Kano, Nnamdi Azikwe Int l Airport, Abuja and Port-Harcourt Airport, Port Harcourt, which serve as import/export routes to African Countries and other countries of the world. The present Federal Government Policy Investment in manufacturing industries especially non oil sector e.g. agricultural exports. Consequently, Nigeria is witnessing a lot of imports and exports of raw materials and finished products. Some of our exports of agricultural food commodities because of the perishable nature are air freighted. Likewise, thermolabile, high potency products such as Biological/vaccines that need to be transported quickly under special conditions are air freighted; hence that aviation industry plays a very important supportive role globally. Consequently optimizing opportunities available in the Air freight sector requires a legal framework, political will by government, provision of adequate manpower, infrastructures, equipment, enabling environment and a concerted effort by all stakeholders i.e. co-operation, transparency, commitment, hard work and access to adequate information. It is very important that operators in the sector have adequate knowledge of the relevant laws and procedures governing the movement of goods in that International Trade. This paper will focus on the role of NAFDAC in Air freighting and evaluate NAFDAC s Regulatory activity so far while examining how
some of the factors enumerated above have contributed to success story of NAFDAC. As a rule, goods moving in International market are expected to comply with certain minimum requirements. Of greatest importance among these requirements are ensuring the safety, quality, efficacy and wholesomeness of food and their compliance with National standards, standards laid down by codex Alimentarius Commission, as well as the World Trade Organization (WTO) requirements of Sanitary & Phytosanitary Standards. In case of medicines, cosmetics, medical devices etc, they are expected to comply with the National and International Pharmacopoeia Standard. It is in these areas that the role of NAFDAC becomes important. The National Agency for Food and Drugs and Control (NAFDAC) was established as a parastatal of the Federal Ministry of Health by Decree No. 15 of 1993 as amended by Decree No. 19 of 1999. It is a regulatory body mandated to promote and protect the health and well being of Nigerians through the regulation and control of the importation, exportation, manufacture, sale, use and advertisement of food, drugs, cosmetics, medical devices, packaged water, chemical and detergents. The aforementioned products are generally referred to by NAFDAC as Regulated Products . It is very important that the quality of products are maintained from manufacture to consumption. Transportation of product should therefore ensure that...