Our V i s i o n

To be the lead regulatory agency responsible for the prevention of introduction and or spread of exotic pests and diseases of all agricultural products in international trade.

Our M i s s i o n

To provide an effective science based regulatory service for the quality assurance of agricultural products through a consistent enforcement of sanitary and phytosanitary measures for plants, animal and aquatic resources health, thereby promoting food safety, a secured and sustainable agricultural and economic development



  1. Apply for import permit to the chief Veterinary Officer (CVO), Federal Department of Veterinary and Pest Control Services, Federal Ministry of Agricultural and Rural Development, Area 11, Abuja.
  2. Obtain import/export permit for wildlife subject to the acquisition of CITES permit from the Federal Ministry of Environment.
  3. Notify Nigeria Agricultural Quarantine Services (NAQS) of import permit details.
  4. Notify NAQS of the arrival date.
  5. On arrival point of entry, make declaration of animal /animal product or consignment for NAQS inspection and certification.
  6. Declaration should include the entire document accompanying the animal/animal product and consignment including Sanitary/Health certificate of the animal, documents of port of embarkment, port of disembarkment, country of export, country of destination, purpose of importation etc.
  7. NAQS officer verifies the document and consignments as well as the status of animal & animal product at the point of entry.
  8. On arrival at the port, NAQS officials conduct visual inspection of animal and animal products. Live animals are sent to the quarantine stations for observation and suspected animal products are lab tested. If satisfied, animal or animal products are released; otherwise animal or animal products are detained for further quarantine action.
  9. Quarantine facilities where animals are sent to could be NAQS or owners’ facility where necessary laboratory checks and certification are carried out.
  10. For live animals, they must be held for a reasonable quarantine period.
  11. 11) If the animal & animal product or consignment does not comply with the above, the importer will pay the appropriate user fees (calculated by NAQS) for further necessary quarantine action.
  12. Where an animal is infected with a zoonotic disease, the animal could be seized for further necessary action or destroyed by NAQS at the importer’s expense.


  1. Submission of letter of intent to export live fish/ aquatic product to the Coordinating Director Nigeria Agricultural Quarantine Service(NAQ) (Sea Fisheries Act 1992)
  2. Check for protocols for importation of live fish of the country of destination
  3. Inspection of production processes for sanitary certification equivalent to EC Directive 91/493/EEC- (to be arranged and borne by exporter)
  4. Pre-export isolation, monitoring, risk assessment (current water microscopy) (international quarantine protocol)
  5. Radio-active Free Certificate.
  6. Application for an Issuance of Health Certificate (EU/WTO/Codex requirement) for a fee.
  7. Approval for export by The Coordinating Director, Nigeria Agricultural Quarantine Service and invitation to apply for an EXPORT PERMIT with a bank draft payable to Nigeria Agricultural Quarantine Service. (Sea Fisheries Act 1992)
  8. Approval for export by The Coordinating Director, Nigeria Agricultural Quarantine Service and invitation to apply for an EXPORT PERMIT with a bank draft payable to Nigeria Agricultural Quarantine Service. (Sea Fisheries Act 1992)
  9. Inspection of handling and packaging.(to be arranged and borne by exporter)
  10. Issuance of Export Permit not earlier than 48 hours to expected date of export.
  11. Inspection of loading and pasting of HS-code on package by a Quarantine Officer (Sea Fisheries Regulation 1995) (to be arranged and borne by exporter.)

  12. Note:

    1. Letter of intent should specify:
    - Name and address of source;
    - Type (species) of intended commodity;
    - Average weight (size) of product to be exported;
    - History of production of the commodity;
    - Record of average current water physico/chemical parameters;
    - Address to whom product is to be exported;
    2.Application for EXPORT PERMIT should specify:

    - Name of aircraft to be used for freighting of consignment.
    - Date and time of departure.
    - Port of Exit.
    - Packaging/ labeling compliance.
    - Average weight and quantity of fish being exported.


    3. An application for Export Permit must have the following attachments:
    - Health certificate equivalent to codex/EU protocol.
    - Radio-active Free Certificate equivalent to EU protocol.
    - A printed package label.


    For the importation of live aquatic products namely- fish, crustaceans, molluscs, sea weeds, echinoderms, water etc. The consignor or his agent must diligently satisfy all quarantine regulations on examination and approval procedures before signing any trade contract, and must obtain a QUARANTINE PERMIT OF ENTRY for aquatic products before loading of consignment for freighting into Nigeria Without a PERMIT OF ENTRY , no aquatic product would be allowed into the country. The PERMIT OF ENTRY is required for the release of the consignment to its consignee in Nigeria. Without it, the consignment would be rejected for failure of Quarantine Integrity (QuInt).


    General administration procedure is a due diligent practice to reduce pre-entry delay in processing of document.

    a. Application for Permit:
    In compliance to regulation of the Sea Fisheries Act 1992 and the NAQS/FDF Memorandum of Understanding of 7/12/2012, an application for importation of aqua tic product must be made to:
    The Head of Department, Nigeria Agricultural Quarantine Service,
    Abuja. (Aquatic Resources Quarantine Department).
    The application must indicate:

    1. The name of the product to be imported
    2. The country of origin of the product
    3. Quantity of the product to be imported
    4. Name of company from which product is sourced

    b. Payment of Fees
    A reviewable fee of N 10,000 is chargeable for import of live aquatic products. Payment is made into NAQS account in bank drafts.

    c.Filing of Document
    It is assumed that arrangements for importation of products must have been concluded prior to an application for import permit. As a result, the following documents are required as attachments to the application for import permit:

    1. EU certification of origin of products in line with Directive 91/493/EEC;
    2. A valid International Health Certificate for the fish issued not earlier than TEN DAYS before date of arrival in Nigeria
    3. Diary or history of the fish being imported
    4. Disinfectant/biologics/chemical treatment administered along production/processing line
    5. Radio- active free certificate.

    d.Post – Boarder Action Plan.
    A comprehensive post border action to curtail risk that is associated with new exotic species must be presented to NAQS, discussed and agreed upon before permit of entry is granted. This is an International Protocol for listing of countries as quarantine compliance to ICES (2005), FAO (2005) and OIC (2006).
    Components of Post – border Action Plan are as follows:

    i. Determination of the Acceptable Level Of Risk (ALOR)

    1. Biology of species
    2. Prevalent disease/pests
    3. Life stage of commodity
    4. Procedures/sanitation of source

    ii.Strategies for appropriate pr otection – Appropriate Level Of Protection (ALOP).

    1. Restriction plan
    2. Facility treatment/disinfection plan
    3. Monitoring programmes
    4. Sterilization of effluent water and disposal plan * Disposal of waste water should conform to any existing laws covering the jurisdiction of the locality where the commodity will be transferred or introduced.
    5. Contingency planning in case of escape of animals or pathogens.

    iii.Risk analysis programmes

    1. Co – habitation treatment
    2. Induced stress treatment
    3. Micro – biological assessments of effluent water.

    iv.Competence of management personnel

    v.Plan of internal quarantine audit (period/frequency)

    vi.Plan of external quarantine audit (period/frequency)

    e.Permit of Entry:
    Certain documents necessary for the final departure/or freighting of aquatic products may be delayed due to logistics. Whenever the documents are made available and are authenticated, the importer would on request be granted a PERMIT OF ENTRY at no extra cost. The request for permit of entry should contain such details as:

    1. The carrier name
    2. Port of departure
    3. Port of arrival
    4. Expected time of arrival in Nigeria
    5. (Packaging details- number and “boxing”)

    Permit of Entry must not be given earlier than 24 hours before Time of Departure from country of origin. This is to reduce hazards due to increase in ammonia levels, reduction in tranquilizer effect and stress-causing conditions for the animals.

    Permit of Entry is best transmitted through electronic mails to enable loading of consignment take place immediately. Such mails must be acknowledged prior to loading by electronic mail also.


    All imports of aquatic product must be subjected to strict quarantine regulations in accordance with the policies of the Federal Republic of Nigeria on food- safety, bio-security, Agricultural Transformation Agenda, international protocols on risk control, and quarantining of foreign aquatic animals.

    i. Inspection of Quarantine Approved Places (QAPs)
    The readiness of quarantine approved place (facility) for the immediate reception and acclimation of the import fish must be confirmed by an Aquatic Quarantine (fisheries) Inspector less than 24 hours before the arrival of the commodity.

    ii. Purchase of treatment/disease control and quarantine management biologics for the quarantining of the fish. Biologics should be in place at least 48 hours before arrival of commodity.

    iii. SOP’s for ALOP audit apply

    iv.Facility Status Clearance (FSC)
    must be issued after ALOP audit to the Importer and must be attached to the application for a Permit of Entry.

    (Arrangement and cost of i and ii above are borne by the importer)


    i.Inspection of Quarantine Seal


    1. physical activities of fish
    2. mortalities
    3. Clearness of current water

    iii.Rapid Test

    1. Temperature
    2. pH value
    3. Dissolved gases

    iv. Facility Status Clearance (FSC) must be issued after ALOP audit to the importer and must be attached to this application for a Permit of Entry.

    c.Sample Collection

    1. Collection of fish sample at a statistically acceptable ratio dependent upon size (number and weight) per container.
    2. Collection of samples of current water.
    3. Special feed (antibacterial/ antiviral). Feed usually must accompany every imported live fish at a quantity that would sustain the fish for at least 21 days. Feed sample are also collected for analysis and valuation for bacterial status.

    About one hour before arrival of the product, the Franc-Greco quarantine tank should be activated.

    1. Introduction of sample (current water not inclusive) into the quarantine tank after due acclimation.
    2. Monitoring of the sample fish is carried out for at least 14 days in line with international aquatic animals quarantine procedures and best practice.

    e.Laboratory Analysis

    i.Current water

    1. Temperature
    2. pH
    3. Ammonia/nitrite
    4. Carbon gases
    5. Hardness
    6. Salinity
    7. Microbiology

    ii. Feed

    1. Microbiology
    2. Feed content (protein content analysis)

    f. Quarantine Integrity Certificate (Biosecurity Clearance Certificate)
    At the end of quarantining:

    1. Quarantine integrity certificate is issued if the quarantine observation and laboratory results are satisfactory.
    2. Quarantining may be extended if there is suspicion of any disease yet to be manifested by the commodity.


    1. Logistics for sample quarantining is borne by the importer if it is done at a location of his choice.
    2. Costs of biologics and extra feeds for the treatment and management of the import fish is borne by the importer.
    3. No fish under quarantine management must be released or taken away for transfer or introduction into an aquaculture system or the wild. This is a quarantine offence under the Fisheries Quality Assurance Act.
    4. NAQS will not be responsible for any losses or mortality of product/commodity due to delay of correct information, negligence or mismanagement of consignment of live fish by the importer or his agent.
    5. Except for issuances of Quarantine Integrity Certificate, NAQS is not obligated to release samples of fish collected for quarantining and analysis, or account for them.

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