Strengthening Nigeria’s Trade Support Institutions (SNTSI)

Objective and Target Groups

The Strengthening Nigeria’s Trade Support Institutions (SNTSI) Programme aims to improve the capacity of Trade Support Institutions to facilitate trade through an effective management of trade policy and customs reforms.

The beneficiaries of this programme are the Federal Government of Nigeria through its respective Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), particularly the Federal Ministry for Industry, Trade and Investment (FMITI) and the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), members of the Organised Private Sector (OPS) and other relevant non-state actors. The main target group of this project includes the owners and employees of MSMEs and the members of other economically active low-income households.


European Union and German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)

Implementation Period

2013 to 2017

Implementation Area

Federal level and selected states and border areas in Nigeria

Programme Outline and Approach

The programme objective is pursued via four pillars:

Pillar 1) Capacity development of FMITI: FMITIs institutional and trade policy capacities are strengthened to support trade integration in the ECOWAS sub-region and the Multilateral Trading System. For this purpose, trainings and coaching are provided on resource management, trade policy development and implementation. FMITI will be supported to spearhead multi-stakeholder trade policy dialogue and donor coordination. Research and the necessary information are provided to design and implement the respective trade policy measures. A monitoring and reporting tool on ECOWAS rules and regulations is implemented.

Pillar 2) Capacity development of NCS: NCS capacity is strengthened to implement, monitor and report on trade facilitation-related policy measures agreed at ECOWAS and national level. The capacity of the NCS Command and Staff College in Gwagwalada will be reinforced, enabling NCS to provide appropriate training to its staff. This is facilitated through an academic partnership with an international Centre of Excellence in the field of customs administration. Standard training curricula and modules are developed and Training-of-Trainers courses conducted. NCS technical skills will be improved to develop joint border control procedures, exchange information on trade flows and conduct impact analysis on import/export policy changes in collaboration with other customs formations of neighbouring countries.

Pillar 3) Capacity development of OPS/NSA: The capacity of OPS and other key non-state actors is strengthened to play a proactive role in trade policy making and implementation. OPS and other non-state actors are trained on trader‘s rights and obligations under Nigerian and ECOWAS trade related policy frameworks. Case studies are conducted on trade barriers faced by non-oil products imports and exports to and from Nigeria. An easily usable reporting mechanism on violation of ECOWAS rules on the limitation of check points and other malpractices is implemented.

Pillar 4) Programme governance and sector policy review: A Programme Governance Structure and a Development Partner coordination mechanism are established. A Sector Policy Review Mechanism to facilitate Development Partner coordination and inter-agency trade policy dialogue is put in place.

As to further maximize the achievement of the project’s objectives, SNTSI is complemented by the Pro-Poor Growth and Promotion of Employment in Nigeria Programme (SEDIN) funded by the German Government and which is being
implemented by GIZ as well.

In line with Nigeria’s national development strategy, the Vision 20:2020, and the Financial Systems Strategy 2020 (FSS 2020), the programme has the objective to enable key actors from the public, private and financial sector to plan and implement reforms for improving the business and investment climate, enhance competitiveness and add value to domestic resources as well as improving access to financial services for MSMEs.

The programme objective was originally in its first and second phase pursued via four units (for details on the units, please click on the links):

  • Unit 1 – Financial System Development
  • Unit 2 – Business Enabling Environment Reforms
  • Unit 3 – Trade Policy and Facilitation
  • Unit 4 – Agricultural and Non-agricultural Value Chains (VCs)

However, in the third phase, activities of the programme have been streamlined into two main units, comprising of:

  • Unit 1 – Access to Finance
  • Unit 2 – Private Sector Development

The intervention area ‘access to finance’ aims to make financial services more efficient and customer-oriented. For this purpose, the project supports the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and microfinance banks to improve the regulatory environment for microfinance and the performance of selected microfinance banks, assess possibilities to support financial institutions to increase their MSME lending activities, facilitate the introduction of microinsurance products, as well as activities to foster financial literacy and consumer protection in the financial sector. Furthermore, trainings and exchange are organized and implemented together with the microfinance banks and their clients.

In the intervention area ‘private sector development’, GIZ advises state institutions on reform measures for MSMEs to create a conducive business environment and actors in the value chains to strengthen their interlinkages. Furthermore, the project aims to improve the quality and use of business development services by MSMEs and provides tailored entrepreneurial and management skills trainings to MSMEs. In all value chains, the project works in close cooperation with industry associations, producers and off takers in the supply, processing and marketing sectors.

To raise the effectiveness and sustainability of these measures, up-scaling has been planned from the outset. The results of the supported pilot measures of individual states will be disseminated to other states via peer-learning to set an example and enhance the sustainability and broad impact of reforms.

The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH is an enterprise entirely owned by the Federal Government of Germany, supporting it in achieving its objectives in the field of international cooperation for sustainable development. Most of our work is commissioned by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). GIZ also operates on behalf of other German ministries as well as German states and municipalities, and public and private sector clients in Germany and abroad. These include the governments of other countries, the European Commission, the United Nations and the World Bank.”