The Federal Government has approved new regulations for courier and logistics services in the country. The new guidelines dubbed Courier and Logistics Operations 2020 was signed by the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Pantami.
According to the minister, the new regulation will enhance the powers of the Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST) to steer and safeguard the operations of courier and delivery services in the country.The new regulation will replace the former regulations which has been in existence since 2001.
Boost for SME Logistics
The provisions for the CRD shows that a logistics company needs high capital to acquire its license and commence operations. This makes it especially difficult for small delivery companies with low working capital to obtain.
However, the new regulation could change all that. In the letter approving the regulation, the minister agreed that the old regulations had no clear guidelines for the SMEs. He added that it was largely focused on the big players in the Courier industry.
With the new guidelines, the minister revealed that six categories of licensing were created, ranging from International operators, Regional State, Municipal or Intra-city, and giving consideration for special Small & Medium Enterprises (SME) Licence.
NIPOST states that the categorization will enable the licensees to operate at their levels per time and scope. It also added that it creates room for migration as a licensee has rights to migrate from a particular licence category to another. This means that a logistics company as its business grows can move from SME licence to state licence or higher.
According to the regulator, the guidelines will eliminate the risk posed by dubious operators who may take advantage of poor control to operate illegally. Also, to maintain diligence and trustworthiness, the new regulations require operators to display in their offices’ list of prohibited and restricted items to guide their customers.
Generally, the purpose of the new regulation shows that it is a great improvement on the old one as it addresses some of the underlying puzzles about the regulation of the logistics sector. However, we will have to wait to see how much the new licences will cost and the requirements for obtaining it. One thing is sure though, operating in that sector should be easier.