How to Start a Successful Importation Business in Nigeria

Becoming an importer of goods or products in Nigeria involves a lot of tasks. Apart from the fact that it requires a huge amount of money, there are also some legal process involved.

Nigeria is an import dependent country and depends widely on importation of some certain goods to fill up the daily needs of its population. Most successful companies in Nigeria strive mainly on importation of domestic and commercial goods from distant countries.

Businessmen travel to various countries of the world to import goods to the country in large quantities. Such goods include spare parts, cosmetics, jewelries, food items, textile and cloth, building materials and many others.

The basic factors that makes this business lucrative is the need fill up the gap for goods that are required in the country but not yet manufactured locally or commodities which are sold overseas marketplace at a relatively cheap price are sold at a much higher price in Nigeria.


The following guide below will help direct your steps to the right part.

  • Effective Market Survey

You need to do a proper market survey and also conduct one on one inquiry if you can with the sellers of the products you intend to import as to have the real local wholesale price before you conclude to import such products.  

Knowing or getting the buyers in advance is also vital, mainly if you are not selling or distributing these goods on your own. Most importers in Nigeria usually are distributors as well and do have their own standby warehouse on ground. 


  • Study the External Market

You also need to study the external market value and right sourcing price and the best market where to source for the product you wanted to import, mainly using the internet or using consultancy companies that already posses the know how. 

Some products are cheaper in certain countries and may be expensive in other countries. Notable countries for exporters from Nigeria are China, UAE (Dubai), India, United States, Germany, Italy, Spain, Turkey, and Malaysia.


  • Obtain a Valid International Passport

Travelling is one of the basic need to be an importer, thereby it is necessary to visit an Immigration Office in any of the States in Nigeria and apply for an international passport. The passport will be ready for collection in less than twenty-four hours of application and data capturing.


  • Register your Business

You have to register your business with Nigeria Corporate Affair Commission, a body in Nigeria that handles all business formation, doing this should prove that your business is legally recognised by the government.


  •  Pay your Tax

You will be required to present evidence of three years tax payment before a travel visa will be issued to you.


  •  Apply to an Embassy

Apply in person for a visa to an embassy or consulates of the country you intend travelling to. You have to include the originals and photocopies of important documents. Also, make sure you include the statement of account of your business and evidence of hotel reservation.


  •  Go for Interview

You may be required to attend an official oral interview to explain why you want to travel to the country. However, some embassy may not need your presence but rather the originals and photocopies of your documents.


  •  Obtain your Flight Ticket

If you are lucky to secure a travel visa from an embassy, consult a travel agency to pay your flight fare.


  •  Get the necessary things

You have to know that most countries in the western world have unfriendly weather conditions, depending on the month you are set to travel. Therefore you need to get things like a winter jacket, canvas, gloves and other things. These things are more expensive in some countries over there.


  •  Travel with someone who is in the Business

As one travelling to a country for the first time, you may need to travel with someone who is already in the business as he will take you to places where you will get what you need at a more reduced price than you doing that entirely on your own for the first time.


  •  Change your Money

You will have to change your money to the currency of the country you are travelling to. Such transaction can take place in banks, or bureau the change in various locations in Nigeria.


  •  Ensure you return within the approved time.

Make sure you return to Nigeria within embassy approved time as failure to follow the directives will amount to a denial of visa next time you want to make another trip of this kind.


Many businessmen in Nigeria have encountered challenges trying to travel overseas for importation business. A lot of them have been duped or have one ugly experience or the other due to ignorance of the process to secure a business visa.

This write-up will serve as a guide to those who will want to engage in importation business from Nigeria and other African countries.


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