By Emmanuella Anokam
Abuja, Dec. 4, 2020 The Nigeria Export Processing Zones (NEPZA) says it will commence operation on a new template for Free Zone registration with effect from Jan. 1, 2021 to improve Ease of Doing Business.
Prof. Adesoji Adesugba, NEPZA’s Managing Director, said it would make the process of registering a Free Zone company more efficient and attractive for potential investors without compromising the integrity of the system.
Adesugba, in a statement by Mr Martins Odeh, Head, Corporate Communications, NEPZA, on Friday, said there were two plans outlined; one would be adopted immediately and the other to be implemented between six to 12 months.
“The steps leading to successful registration listed for adherence in the short term includes: NEPZA will allow the official submission of registration documents by clear scanned signed copy to emails of the Zone Administrators.
“This email should then be forwarded to the team at NEPZA headquarters instantaneously for processing. Once received by Email, the documents should be processed, and a virtual screening meeting scheduled within 24 hours.
“Once the application is approved, Certified True Copies (CTC) of the scanned signed documents and the NEPZA registration certificate should be sent to the Zone Administrator on behalf of the newly registered Enterprise.
“The Zone Manager will then submit the original documents to the Zone Administrator and collect the CTC documents and NEPZA Registration certificate on behalf of the new Enterprise.’’
The NEPZA boss, however, said the authority would in the long term have a system-driven process.
He also explained that there would be a company registration portal where all Free Zones could download the NEPZA forms (with serial numbers) and submit documents for company registration.
According to him, the portal will allow uploads of proof of registration fee payments made by remitta to the Treasury Single Account (TSA) and scheduling of virtual screening meetings.
“It is imperative that we continue to make timely process improvements such as this to generate goodwill for the Authority and position our Free Zones as an attractive investment location to a wide range of investors’’, he said.