The Nigeria Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA), the agency responsible for promoting and facilitating local and international investments into licensed free export processing zones (EPZ), says it will introduce a new system for free zone registration from January 1, 2021.
In a statement issued on Friday by Martins Odeh, NEPZA’s head of corporate communications, said the process would improve ease of doing business.
Adesoji Adesugba, NEPZA’s managing director (MD), said the new process has two stages; one would be put in place immediately and the other to be adopted between 6 to 12 months.
“The steps leading to successful registration listed for adherence in the short term includes: the official submission of registration documents by clear scanned signed copy to emails of the zone administrators,” he said.
“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.’’
Adesugba noted that NEPZA will operate a system-driven process in the long term.
According to him, there would be a company registration portal where all free zones could download the NEPZA forms which would have serial numbers and submit documents for company registration.
The portal, he added, will allow uploads of evidence of registration fee payments made by remita to the treasury single account (TSA) and scheduling of virtual screening meeting.
“It is imperative that we continue to make timely process improvements such as this, in order to generate goodwill for the authority and position our free zones as an attractive investment location to a wide range of investors”, the NEPZA MD said.