Author Topic: Shipping Logistics/Cargo Handling in Nigeria  (Read 546 times)

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There are steps that must take place in a shipping process in Nigeria, from shipping logistics to cargo handling. Each step has costs associated with it, hence, it is important that an agreement is reached between parties responsible, before the commencement of the shipping process.

This article focuses on Shipping logistics and Cargo handling in Nigeria.  Although the service of Shipping Logistics and Cargo handling company in Nigeria like Vagmon e-Grup & Logistics Ltd can be of great help to you as this will save you time, money, and headache.

Shipping Logistics

Shipping logistics in Nigeria refers to all the steps necessary in moving cargo from Nigeria, to the location of the importer or supply country.   below are the necessary steps:

Export Haulage

The first step in a shipping process in Nigeria involves the transportation of goods from the shipper’s location to the freight forwarders warehouse. This process is referred to as export haulage.

Now, who pays for this shipping is fully dependent on the agreement between consignee and shipper. The agreement is ex Works (EXW) is the consignee is responsible for the cost. However, the most common arrangement usually involves freight forwarder arranging and paying for this transportation. 

Customs Clearance in Nigeria

Admittedly, there are two different custom clearance processes, import customs clearance, and export customs clearance. However, our focus for this article is the export customs clearance. In Nigeria, clearance involves the following:

  •    Examination and inspection of cargo
  •    Payment of customs duties and necessary taxes
  •   Quarantine Inspection
  •    Payment of quarantine inspection treatment fee

Other payable fees include:

  •    Storage fee
  •    Demurrage fee
  •    Detention fee
  •    Insurance fee

Note that your agreement with the seller must include all these, so as to avoid any problems.
Export Documentation in Nigeria

The major documents necessary for shipping in Nigeria include:

  • A copy of suppliers Invoice and a Packing list (commercial shipment)
  •    VAT or Tax Identification Number (TIN)
  •    Marine cargo insurance (optional)

Cargo Handling

There are two phases of cargo handling, namely;

Origin Handling

Origin handling refers to the handling of cargo in Nigeria. Usually, these are a series of activities carried out by the freight forwarder.

Receiving the cargo is usually the first step, the freight forwarder oversees the unloading of the cargo from the truck it arrives in.

The cargo is now put in a staging area for counting and inspection. Other activities the freight forwarder indulge in include:

  •    Validation against booking
  •    Issuance of the forwarder’s receipt
After this, the freight forwarder issues the cargo receipt to the shipper or shipping company. Hence, triggering the documentation that cargo has been received for shipping.

Destination Handling

This phase of cargo handling involves various activities that take place at the freight forwarder’s destination location. Destination handling steps include:

  •    Receiving documents from the origin office of the freight forwarder (Nigeria).
  •    Checking the document
  •    Submitting the bill lading or airway bill to the shipping line or airline respectively.
  •    The cargo is received at the port and moved to the destination warehouse.
  •    At the destination warehouse, unloading, inspecting, and sorting of the cargo takes place. In a bid to prepare the goods for the consignee to claim.

As usual, payment for destination handling is dependent on the agreement. For commercial shipping, terms like DDU or DDP means the shipper is responsible for all costs necessary to get the cargo to the consignee.

However, agreement terms like EXW, FCA, FOB, CNF or CIF, means that the party paying for the freight is also responsible for the destination handling cost.


In this article, we have discussed the shipping logistics and handling of cargo in Nigeria. We have seen the required steps involved in shipping in Nigeria. Export haulage, Export clearance, export documentation, origin handling, and destination handling.


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