Export to Nigeria

export to nigeria

2014 is set to be a promising year for Nigeria: already the most populous country in Africa, the continent’s primary oil producer is en route to becoming its largest economy.

Nigeria’s customers are increasingly turning their spending power to Europe for higher-quality (though not necessarily luxury) goods. Supported by a shared language, Irish companies with a view to export to Nigeria have a unique opportunity to get ahead of the curve and tap into this market at an early stage.

Sources: Bloomberg Business Week, GOV.UK, McKinsey Global Institute, UKTI, The World Bank

For more detailed information when trading with Nigeria, download our Nigeria Fact Sheet.



Nigeria Fact Sheet (3MB)

Read more detailed
information about Nigeria

DHL Facts

Locations: 237

Gateways into the country: 1

Number of Service Centres: 35

DHL Delivery Zone: 10

Vehicle Fleet: 265

Nigeria: Country Profile
Population: 174.5 million Exports from
US$ 95.68 billion (2012 est.)
Area: 923,768 sq km Export
Petroleum and petroleum products 95%, cocoa, rubber
Official Language: English (official); 500+ indigenous languages including Hausa, Yoruba, Igbo (Ibo), Fulani Top Export Origins: Ghana, UK, Cote d’Ivoire, USA, Niger, South Africa, Cameroon, Canada, Togo
Currency: 1 naira (NGN) = 100 kobo IMPORTS INTO NIGERIA
GDP: US$ 444.3 billion Imports into
US$ 53.36 billion (2012 est.)
Time Zones: UTC +1; no summertime observed Import Commodities: Machinery, chemicals, transport equipment, manufactured goods, food and live animals.
Ethnic Groups: 250+ known groups, including Hausa and Fulani (29%), Yoruba (21%), Igbo (Ibo) (18%), Ijaw (10%), Kanuri (4%), Ibibio (3.5%), Tiv (2.5%) Top Import Origins: USA, UK, France, South Africa, Italy
Transit Times
The times provided for
dutiable shipments
are based on the time
expected for customs
in Nigeria to clear the
shipment. This is
contingent upon
the value of the shipment.
Destination Non-Dutiable Shipment Dutiable Shipment
Abuja 2 days 3 days
Lagos 2 days 3 days
Port Harcourt 2 days 3 days
Kano 3 days 5 days
Enugu 2 days 3 days
  • Important information

    There is no minimum threshold (duty free allowance) so all imports are subject to duty and taxes. Duty rates vary from 0% to 35%, depending on the commodity. VAT is levied on imports at a standard rate of 5%, based on the sum of CIF (Cost, Insurance, Freight) value, duty & excise and other taxes, if applicable.

    Commercial invoices should clearly include details of the cost of the items, cost of insurance and freight charges.

    SONCAP certification is required for many products, for details see

    DHL can assist you with trading with Nigeria. Contact the DHL team on 1890 725 725.

    DHL Customer Services is also available on 1890 725 725.

Prohibited Items Specific to Nigeria

The list below is in addition to DHL’s standard list of prohibited items.

  • Animal products
  • Antiques
  • Asbestos
  • Assembled bicycles
  • Bagged cement
  • Barytes & bentonites
  • Blank invoices
  • Dangerous goods including axes, cutlasses, firearms or parts of, hazardous or combustible materials and spades & shovels
  • Furniture
  • Furs
  • Gambling devices & gaming machines
  • Specific grains & grain products: maize, millet, sorghum, spaghetti & noodles, wheat flour
  • Handbags, bags, belts, wallets, purses including suitcases of leather or plastic
  • Hollow glass & bottles of capacity exceeding 150 mL
  • Ivory
  • Leather or plastic footwear
  • Mosquito repellent coils
  • Specific foodstuffs & perishables: alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages including mineral water, cocoa butter, fresh fruit, fruit juice in retail packs, meat & meat products including poultry, powder & cakes, sweets including sugar confectionary but excluding chocolate, vegetable oil
  • Plants: fresh and plastic flowers
  • Plastic buckets, bins, coat hangers, plates, knives, spoons, forks, cups and bowls
  • Precious metals & stones
  • Soaps & detergents
  • Textiles with African prints
  • Tobacco
  • Used air conditioners, compressors, fridges & freezers
  • Used clothing
  • Wheelbarrows

Restricted items specific to Nigeria:

For all document shipments, only write DOX on the waybill to reduce the chance of these items being targeted for fraud.

Magazines, periodicals and journals Maximum weight: 5 kg / 11 lb.

Business cards, catalogues, newspapers and technical manuals Maximum quantity: 50 pieces.

Cancelled cheques (NI), computer printouts, computer- generated ship manifests diplomatic mail, general business documents, money orders (NI) and publications not for public resale Max weight 50 kg / 110 lb.

Drugs: Non-prescription Detailed packing list or invoice and reason for export required. Contact DHL Customer Services if items are to be shipped on a commercial scale. Vitamins, dietary, hair, nail, skin, herbal and health food supplements are allowed for private use only. Drugs: Prescription Regulations apply and additional paperwork is required. Contact DHL Customer Services for more information. Drugs for personal use are exempt from additional regulations, but must be accompanied by a doctor’s prescription and be in quantities considered ‘reasonable’ for individual use. For foodstuffs, military equipment, seeds and x-ray machines please contact DHL Customer Services before shipping.

Blank forms Maximum quantity: 10 pieces.