The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), has removed Product Registration Certificate, PRC) from the list of documentary requirements for cargo clearance at the nation’s ports effective from today, November 1, this year

The Director General of the organisation, Mr. Osita Aboloma, has therefore directed officers and men in the agency not to request for the document again during the process of cargo clearance nationwide.

Aboloma explained that the removal of the PRC from cargo clearance requirements would not only reduce cost but facilitate speedy cargo clearance.

The Director General, who gave the directive on Wednesday in Lagos at a one-day sensitization programme on the danger of substandard products for marketers at ASPAMDA International Market, stressed that the SON would not compromise standards and charged t importers and marketers to support the organisation’s fight against fake and substandard products in the country.

He pointed out that the Act establishing the SON had been amended and given more power for the organisation to promote the culture of quality assurance and apprehend people violated the law, saying that some ASPAMDA marketers are being prosecuted for promoting sub-standard products.

The SON boss explained: “We cannot allow you to continue to carry on with the business as usual thus endangering lives of Nigerians. We beg you to collaborate with us as we will no longer take ignorance for an excuse.

“Product Registration Certificate has been eliminated as one of the requirements for cargo clearance and any officer who requests for it from November 1, 2018 should be reported to the Police. It is designed to reduce cost of cargo clearance”, Aboloma added.

The standardization expert maintained that the SON could not stop foreign companies and investors from operating in the country in so far their actions complied with the law but charged them, particularly the Chinese, to comply with the product standardization requirements set by the organisation.

Speaking on the operations of the organisation towards standardisation, Head of Ports and Borders of SON, Engr Yahaya Kuka, told the importers and exporters at the forum that that cargo clearance processes had been simplified with the introduction of electronic clearance by the SON which allows importers to fill their cargo clearance documents and pay the necessary charges online.

According to him, there is a synergy between the SON, Nigeria Customs Service and other government agencies in the ports, adding that the containers are being flagged down because of false declaration, lack of SONCAP certificate, and no country of origin, among other breaches.

Kuka disclosed that there now existed a platform created by the Director General that allows him to monitor all offences being committed by importers and charged them to adhere strictly to import guidelines.