The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) has decried the appointment of the Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST) as the regulator of the courier market in the while at the same time being an operator in the industry, saying the move is inequitable, repressive and unfair.
Muda Yusuf, the LCCI Director-General, noted in a statement released on Sunday that the mandate offered to the state agency to serve as watchdog over competitors was out in tune with global best practices.
The document, christened Comments on the 2020 NIPOST Regulatory Provisions for Courier Industry, observed that NIPOST’s dual role contradicted government’s ease of doing business policy.
Yusuf enjoined the Nigerian government and the National Assembly to swiftly address the situation, stating that it was contrary to the extant competition law of the country.
The LCCI chief identified the issues confronting the courier business in Nigeria while lauding the Minister of Communications, Isa Ali Pantami, for suspending the new licence and renewal fees rolled out by NIPOST.
He sought the removal of a section of the provision, requiring that operators should contribute 2 per cent of their total annual income to the Postal Fund towards postal development in rural and underserved areas.
‘We submit that this provision will put too much burden on courier and logistics businesses and make them unsustainable. These businesses are already grappling with a multitude of taxes and levies in the course of their daily operations.
‘The provision in the courier regulation, which vests the minister with powers to compel any licensed courier and/or logistics services operator to undertake free delivery service for the purpose of Universal Postal Service Obligations/or any social service delivery in national interest needs to be reviewed.
‘This provision will undermine the confidence of investors in the courier and logistics business and should immediately be repealed. It is a negation of the efforts of the Federal Government to attract investment, create jobs and grow the economy,’ Yusuf said.
He also expressed worry over the rule that all courier items/articles like right issues, statements of account, shares certificates, letters or offer documents and cheques weighing 0.5kg brought to a courier/logistics operator be referred to the closest post office for processing and delivery.
The LCCI boss said the provision was unfair, noting that customers should not be forced to patronise NIPOST against their will regardless of the size or weight of the items.
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