Regulatory Documents

The following documents are required (by law) before goods are shipped or air freighted into Nigeria (Pre-shipment documents).

  • An approved Form M
  • Proforma Invoice
  • Insurance
  • NAFDAC Import Permit (where applicable; for Food, Drugs and imports with chemical components).
  • SON Product Certificate (where applicable; for finished or manufactured goods).
  • NESREA Certificate (For used items and environmental degrading items such as aerosols).

Pre Shipment Inspection Scheme – Form M

The Federal Government of Nigeria mandates every importer to open a Form M for all imports into Nigeria.

This form is obtained from the Importer’s Bank, filled online and submitted online along with all the pre-shipment documents; the supplier’s proforma invoice showing description of goods, quantities and their measurements, FOB unit price, total FOB cost, Total freight, total CIF, country of origin and country of supply. The importer has to also purchase a Nigerian Marine Insurance policy for the goods as required by Nigerian Law.

A Form M is usually issued for a particular supply contract and allows for part shipments. For large project, a Bulk Form M can be issued, which allows continuous part shipments throughout the validity of the Form M. A Form M is valid for Six (6) months and can be extended once for another period of Six (6) months.

Goods exempted from Form M include:

  • Personal effects
  • Some perishables
  • Used vehicles
  • Cargo destined  Free Trade Zones within Nigeria. (For registered importers only)
  • Diplomatic goods
  • Goods imported under Temporary Importation (TI).


Post Shipment Documents

Pre Arrival Assessment Report (PAAR)

This document is issued by the Nigeria Customs Service. Application for PAAR is made through the importer’s Bank (where form M was processed). The PAAR shows duty payable in Naira (without VAT, ETLS, CISS).

Documents to submit when applying for PAAR include:

  • Commercial Invoice
  • Parking List
  • Bill of Lading
  • CCVO (Combined Certificate of value and Origin) Also known as form C16
  • SONCAP (For SON regulated items)
  • NAFDAC Certificate (For NAFDAC regulated items)
  • NESREA Certificate (For used items and environmental degrading items such as aerosols).

Some items are regulated by all 3 Agencies- SON, NAFDAC, NESREA