permits and registration of Businesses

Special Licenses, Registrations and Permits for Businesses in Nigeria


In order to operate in any field, profession or occupation, business organizations and companies, one will need to obtain certain specia licenses, registrations and permits for businesses or the person or organization will be penalized which is termed to be operating illegally.  Irrespective of the nature or specification of your business you will need various licenses and permits before you begin to operate a business

Most licenses and permit may be gotten from the local, state or federal government depends on the type of the business, location and size. A business permit and license is issued by the government or government agencies to individuals or organizations in order for them to carry out their business functions and professions. Various permits and licenses for organizations and professions includes

Registration with CAC (Corporate Affairs Commission)

Before setting up any company in Nigeria, you will have to register your business name with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) in Nigeria. This will be a preamble towards acquiring a license for your start up business. The best structure for your business is to register it as a limited liability company in Nigeria. The following are the requirements for registering your company as a limited liability company

  • The first step required by the applicant is to choose two suitable proposed names for the company. Where this is done, an availability check will be conducted on the CAC online portal to find out if the name is available and not already in use.
  • Choosing the type of company to be registered whether a private limited company or private unlimited company or company limited by guarantee.
  • The objectives and business of the company must be provided.
  • The registered principal address of the company.
  • The share capital and shareholding formula among shareholders will be required.
  • The particulars of a minimum of two (2) Directors will be required. A copy of their means of identification such as voter’s card, national ID, drivers’ license or international passport.
  • Particulars of the company secretary (one of the directors may also act as the Secretary of the company)
  • The applicant will be required to furnish details of the shareholders of the company. Details such as names, occupation, residential address, email address, mobile phone number and means of identification such as driver’s license, international passport or national identity card. It should be noted that the directors listed can also hold the capacity of shareholders in the company if desired.
  • The memorandum and Articles of association of the company to be registered which is advisable to be drafted professionally by a Legal Practitioner. However, the CAC has provided a generic MEMART, which any new company can be adopted.

After which a consultant will prepare the following incorporation documents. They include

  • Duly verified particulars of the director and statement of share capital known as CAC Form 1.1
  • Duly stamped Memorandum and Articles of Association
  • The individual completes all the incorporation documents with the input of an accredited lawyer to duly attest to the incorporation documents.
  • The payment of the prescribed fees will now be duly made online and the incorporation documents immediately stamped online.
  • The stamped incorporation documents will now be duly uploaded into the CAC online portal again for the final review of the commission
  • If all the incorporation documents are well completed and executed, the commission will incorporate the company and issue an incorporation number immediately online.
  • Certificate of Incorporation and the Certified True Copies of the other documents will be issued by CAC and received by the consultant or lawyer, usually in less than 48 hours after the company is duly incorporated by CAC

If the company has foreign shareholders, they will be required to:

  • Register with the Nigeria Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC)
  • Obtain a business permit
  • Register with the National Office of Technology Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP)

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Company Income Tax clearance certificate

Whenever a business is registered, the next step to take by the business owner is to acquire a Company Income tax clearance certificate. The tax clearance certificate is valid for 12 months. In order to obtain a company income tax clearance certificate as a business owner, you will need to adhere to the following procedures:

  • Register your company

This is the first step you have to take, you have to register your company with the FIRS in order to acquire a Tax Identification Number (TIN). There are FIRS offices located in almost every local government area. Your Tax Identification Number (TIN) will be used to pay any tax related transaction.

  • Incorporate your company

The next step for you to take is to incorporate your company. This has to do with registering your company with the Corporate Affairs Commission in Nigeria. A company can register its business name without commencing or starting business.

  • Provide audited books of accounts

If your business or company has commenced business for a period of time, you will be required to provide an audited financial statement or a statement of affairs. The financial statement shows the performance of your business for a particular period. It will also include other books of accounts such as the balance sheet and the profit and loss account

  • Include an estimated computation of your tax payable statement

After the financial statement is prepared and signed, you will also need to include your estimated tax payable. Your estimated tax payable is the amount of tax that you are liable to pay to the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS). Although, the estimated computation of your tax payable may not be accepted by the authorities as they are likely to make their own computation. You must still ensure that you prepare yours and tax is not evaded.

  • Fill the Tax clearance forms

After making the estimated computation of your tax payable statement, the next step is to fill the tax clearance forms. When filling the forms, it is important that you thoroughly read through the form because most of the information in it are confidential and should not be disclosed to a third party. You will also be required to provide the following

  1. A letter head of your business or companies. This will be used for correspondence with the tax authority which will also be submitted with your application for a tax clearance certificate
  2. Certificate of Incorporation
  3. Article of association
  4. Memorandum of association
  5. A copy of your personal tax clearance certificate of the managing director or any director. Your personal tax clearance certificate will be obtained from the state inland revenue service where your business or company is located
  • Submit all the necessary documents

All the relevant document mentioned will be submitted to the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS). The services of a consultant is recommended for all the process and guidelines, the consultant will aid in getting all the necessary form and documents as well as submission to the FIRS. The role of the consultant is very important because they usually determine if the tax officials will accept your figures and dispatch your certificate to you

In a scenario where the account prepared by you is not acceptable by FIRS, they will proceed by law through using the Best of Judgement (BOJ) decision to compute the amount of tax you should pay. Most times when the Best of Judgement (BOJ) decision is carried out, it is not favourable for the tax payer.

  • Payment for the certificate

You will be given a Tax Clearance Certificate that will be signed by an inspector of taxes. The tax clearance certificate is usually for the 3 years preceding your application.

Registration with NIPC

The National Investment promotion commission (NIPC) is responsible for encouraging, promoting and coordinating investment in the Nigerian economy. A company with foreign participation must apply for registration with the NIPC before commencing business in Nigeria. The following documents are required to register with the NIPC;

  • Duly completed NIPC BRC Form I;
  • Certificate of Incorporation;
  • Memorandum & Articles of Association;
  • CAC Form 1.1 (or CAC Forms CO2 and CO7 for old companies)
  • Power of Attorney/ Letter of Authority (where applicable)
  • Evidence of Payment of Processing fee of N15,000
  • Upon approval, the NIPC issues a Certificate of Registration of Business with Foreign Participation. The NIPC aims to revert within 24hours of submitting an application, however, in our experience this can be longer due to backlog of applications.

Business permits from ministry of internal affairs

A business permit is the authorization or approval issued by the Nigerian government through the Department of Citizenship and Business, Ministry of Interior to a foreign individual or corporate body for the start and operation of business in Nigeria.

A foreign owned company that wants to operate in Nigeria must have registered with the CAC (Corporate Affairs Commission) and the Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC). The business permit and the Expatiate quota are both applied at the same time.

The following documents are required to obtain a business permit:

  • An application letter to the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry for Interior.
  • Certificate of registration obtained from NIPC.
  • Certificate of incorporation obtained from CAC.
  • A copy of CAC forms showing statement of share capital structure and particulars of directors.
  • Memorandum and articles of association.
  • Tax Clearance Certificate.
  • Evidence of acquisition of business premises (Lease Agreement or C of O).
  • Feasibility report (should be certified or registered with CAC
  • Joint Venture Agreement for partnership venture between Nigerian and foreigners

Oil and gas sector

For you to operate in the oil and gas sector, you will need permits that are issued from Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR). But before acquiring the permit, you must have registered your business with the Corporate Affairs Commission in Nigeria. In the Nigerian oil and gas sector, any business activity that will be carried out offshore will require a special permit called Offshore Safety Permit (OSP)

Requirements for acquiring DPR permits includes the following which could also be used:

  • Certificate of Incorporation
  • A certified true copy of Memorandum and Articles of Assoc.
  • Other company incorporation documents, such as CAC Form 1.1 or CAC Form CO2 & CAC Form CO7
  • Current Tax Clearance Certificate
  • List of Equipment/Facility available to the company
  • Receipt of payment of the Employee’s Compensation Scheme (Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund)
  • Medical Retainership Agreement with a hospital.
  • Company’s Profile
  • Staff’s list (including the position and qualification of staff)
  • DPR endorsed the request for the expatriate quota (where applicable)
  • List of approved expatriate quota position and their Nigerian understudies (where applicable)
  • Proposed training programme for Nigerian staff for the current year
  • Registration by a relevant professional body (where applicable)
  • Technical agreement or MOU with Nigerian Company/DPR accredited laboratory (where applicable)
  • Health, Safety, Environment and Community (HSEC) Management System

CBN License for Fintech companies

Fintech companies will need to acquire a special license from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) before starting operations. The issue a license called the Payment Systems Providers (PSP) to start up fintech companies. They issue 3 main categories of licenses depending on the type of Fintech Company that you want to set up. The licenses include

  • Super license

This license for companies that operate the payment gateway platforms. The requirement for obtaining this license include

  1. Maintaining at least N5 billion shareholders’ funds
  2. Payment of a licensing fee that ranges between N1-2 million per year for 3 years
  • Standard license

This license is for fintech companies that operates as e-money issuers, agent recruiters, wallet creation and managers. The requirement includes

  1. Maintaining a shareholders fund of at least N3 billion
  2. Payment of a licensing fee that ranges between N500,000 – N1,000,000
  • Basic license

This license is for fintech companies that are into Point of sale (POS) deployment or terminal services and those that provide payment processing gateways, portals and payment applications or solutions. The requirements include

  1. A shareholder requirement of at least N100, 000, 000
  2. Payment for a licensing fee that ranges from N100,000 – N500,-000

Freight forwarding license

To obtain a freight forwarding license, one will need to provide the following requirements

  • Letter of Application to GM (Eastern or Western Ports)
  • Certificate of Company Registration or certificate of incorporation gotten from the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) in Nigeria.
  • Memorandum and Article of Association
  • Bank Reference
  • Three years Tax Clearance Certificate
  • Evidence of Registration with Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN)
  • Registration fee of ₦200,000.00 payable to NPA revenue account.

Import license

This is used for bringing goods into the country. . There is no unified import license in Nigeria. The requirements for obtaining an import license in Nigeria includes the following

  • Registration with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) in Nigeria and a certificate of incorporation as an evidence of your registration
  • Obtain your Tax Identification Number (TIN) from the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) for proof of tax payment with a valid email address attached to it
  • The importer must then proceed to opening a bank account with a reputable bank in Nigeria to act as the Authorized Dealer Bank (ADB). The bank will issue a form called Form-M/ PAAR which is a mandatory documentation that is required by the Federal Government through the Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank of Nigeria
  • The importer then proceeds to obtain the appropriate permit from various regulatory agencies in Nigeria depending on the kind of product that the importer intends to bring into the country
  • The importer must also register as a client at the Nigeria single window trade portal, which is an intergovernmental site that encourages trade procedure between the government agencies and parties on the Federal Inland Revenue site.

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NAFDAC permit

The registration process for NAFDAC Permit is in two general stages:

  • Application for approval to bring in samples – applicable to goods manufactured outside Nigeria
  • Application for full registration of product – applies whether the goods are locally manufactured or imported
  • The general requirements for the registration on either of the stages of the permit include the following:
  • A written application for product registration shall be made to the Director (Registration and Regulatory Affairs) stating the name of the manufacturer, the generic name (and brand name, if applicable) of product, product strength and indications.
  • The applicant should obtain and fill the prescribed NAFDAC application form (Form D-REG/001)
  • Certificate of Incorporation issued by the Corporate Affairs Commission
  • Comprehensive Certificate of analysis of the batch of the product for registration from the manufacturer stating name and signature of the analyst.
  • Packs of the products samples
  • Evidence of pre-product inspection or Certificate of Recognition issued by NAFDAC
  • Notarized original copy of the duly executed Power of Attorney from the product manufacturer (imported product)
  • Certificate of Manufacture issued by the competent health or regulatory authority in the country of origin and authenticated by the Nigerian Mission in that country (if foreign import). Where there is no Nigerian mission, the British High Commission or an ECOWAS country Mission will authenticate.
  • If contract-manufactured, Contract Manufacturing Agreement, properly executed and notarized by a Notary Public in the country of manufacture.
  • Evidence of Membership of the State’s Traditional Medicines Board (Herbal Medicines)
  • Technical Document (Herbal Medicines)
  • Certificate of Pharmaceutical Products (COPP) duly issued and authenticated
  • Current Superintendent Pharmacists license to practice issued by the Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria
  • Premises Registration License from Pharmacists Council of Nigeria (PCN)
  • Warehouse acquisition or premises acquisition(where applicable)
  • Certificate of Trademark Registration of brand name with trademark registry in the Ministry of Commerce here in Nigeria
  • Letter of invitation from manufacturer to the Director General of the NAFDAC to inspect factory abroad, stating full name and location of the plant.
  • Informative, clear and accurate labelling of the products
  • Payment of the prescribed fees.

NSCDC License for security guard companies

The Nigerian Security and the Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) supervises the works of private security guard licenses in Nigeria. They are also charged with the responsibility giving licenses to private security guard services companies in Nigeria according to Section 3 of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corp Act No. 2 of 2003.

The following are the requirements for obtaining a private security license from NSDC:

  • Application for private guard license addressed to the Commandant General
  • CTC of Memorandum and Article of Association (2 copies)
  • Photocopies of certificates of incorporation (2 copies)
  • Payment of prescribed fees
  • Tax Clearance Certificate
  • Statement of account
  • Letter from a legal adviser
  • Letter from an auditor
  • Proposed training program
  • Proposed salary structure
  • Veterinary certificate (optional)
  • Personal History Statement (PHS) forms at One Hundred Thousand Naira (N100, 000) only. All directors must obtain one.
  • Credentials of directors (2 copies) to be attached with PHS form.
  • Letter from bankers
  • Eight (8) passport photographs for each of the Directors
  • Eight (8) full photographs (postcard 5 x7 inches) of each of the Directors with a white background, with five fingers print and signature signed at the back of the postcard (photograph) in the presence of Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps Officers.
  • Photocopy of the signature page of the Directors in the international passport or National ID Card or Driver’s License and this should be stapled at the back cover of the file jacket.,
  • PHS form must be adequately filled by the Directors stating Nil or Not Applicable to portions they do not have answers to and no column should be left unfiled.
  • Attestation letters from referees for each Directors
  • One uniform sample with a photograph of a guard in Uniform (2 copies). All uniforms and accoutrement must not have the semblance of any government agency or similar to any other PGCs.
  • The minimum authorized share capital for a private security company/ consultant must not be less than N10 Million authorized share capital.

NBC license for TV

The Nigeria Broadcasting Commission (NBC) are the ones in charge of giving licenses to TV broadcast stations. The application will be forwarded to the President of Nigeria through the minister of information

The following steps will be required in order to obtain a license for the Television broadcasting business you want to setup:

  • The business should be registered as a limited liability company with the Corporate Affairs Commission in Nigeria. The articles and memorandum of association must include broadcasting as one the business your company wants to conduct
  • The company will write to the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) in order to seek approval for the purchase of a set of application form that costs N50,000.
  • After receiving approval, the company will now proceed to purchase a set of application which will include a copy of Nigerian Broadcasting code and other documents that will provide insights to broadcasting in Nigeria
  • The forms that have been purchased should be completed and submitted with a copy of a comprehensive feasibility of a business plan for the proposed television broadcast station business to the office of the Director general of National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) in Nigeria
  • After the forms have been submitted, the application will be processed by the commission which will transmitted to the president of Nigeria through the minister of information. In Nigeria the constitution provision has the power to give the final approval for radio and Television license.
  • After the application of the applicant has been approved successfully, the applicant is expected to pay a license fee prescribed and sign a license agreement with the secretary of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) in Nigeria.
  • The license issued to the applicant has a life span of 5 years and if the license is not used within 2 years after a successful application, it will be revoked
  • The following documents will be required in order to obtain a license for the Television broadcasting business
  • Obtain a bank draft of N50, 000 payable to Nigerian Communications Commission for the License. Note that the Commissions name must be written in full on the draft
  • Fill the application form and produce two more copies.
  • Certificate of Incorporation
  • Tax Clearance Certificate but if it is a new Company, a tax waiver letter should be obtained and attached to the submission.
  • Certified true copy of Articles and Memorandum of Association
  • 2 passport photographs of authorized representative
  • Certificate of qualified technical staff. (if applicable)
  • Completed application should be submitted in duplicate with all necessary documents attached and bound
  • License fee on submission of application is N10,000
  • All payments are in bank draft

Business permits for Waste management

Before starting a waste management business you need to obtain permits from the state government of the geographical area where your business operations are carried out. The following are the requirements for the permit

  • Certificate of incorporation after registration with the Corporate Affairs Commission in Nigeria (CAC)
  • In Abuja, you will need to register under the Environmental Waste Management Board.
  • In Lagos state, you will have to partner with Lagos State Waste Management Association (LAWMA)
  • A particular fee that would be paid monthly

NERC License for power and electricity

The Nigerian Electrical Regulatory Commission (NERC) responsible for granting licenses to independent power companies in Nigeria. In order to qualify as a renewable energy generator and the applications for license to generate electricity, one must prepare and submit the following relevant documents for SCHEDULE 1A :

  • Finished application form
  • Certificate of incorporation, memorandum of association, articles of association, or deed of partnership or deed of trust if it is a partnership business
  • Registered title deed to site or sales agreement or deed of assignment/gift or evidence of submission of a title deed to a pertinent land processing agency
  • Tax clearance certificate for prompt past three years
  • Ten years business plan
  • Off-take agreement
  • Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) approval certificate or proof of submission and acknowledgement for processing of the report on Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) to the ministry of environment, or details on how effluents and release will be managed (whenever proposed capacity is under 10MW)
  • Fuel supply agreement or a letter from a fuel provider and transporter demonstrating the incorporation of the fuel needs of the applicant in the supply plans of the fuel provider and transporter
  • Memorandum of understanding or letter of intent from the Engineering Procurement Contract (EPC) contractor
  • Memorandum of understanding or letter of intent from the technical accomplice
  • Timelines for commissioning of the power plant and on the date when various limits of the plant will come into operation

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Oil mining lease (OML)

The OML grants exclusive rights to explore, win, produce and carry away petroleum from the relevant area. It allows the lessee to explore, produce and engage in the marketing of the produced oil in specified acreages for a period of 20 years. The following are the required documents for processing an Oil mining lease:

  • Copy of Incorporation Certificate and certified true copy of other incorporation documents
  • Duly completed Application Form
  • Payment of prescribed fee
  • Copy of Tax Clearance Certificate and VAT Certificate
  • Succinct Profile of the company
  • Staff List and Resume of the key Staff
  • Training Program scheduled for Nigerian Staff
  • Copy of MOU with Nigerian company or DPR Accredited laboratory.
  • List of Equipment facility of the company.
  • Evidence of safety, health environment and security arrangement.
  • Evidence of Medical and Retainership agreement with a hospital
  • Evidence of financial capability

Oil Prospecting License (OPL)

An oil prospecting license is granted by the federal government of Nigeria to a company to prospect for petroleum resources. A prospecting license is granted for a period of time not exceeding five (5) years to be determined by the Minister of Petroleum if after the limited time it was granted, the company has not discovered or performed its obligation, the licence will be relinquished back to the government.  One can only acquire an Oil Prospecting License (OPL) through bidding rounds and the grants on the application to the minister of petroleum in Nigeria.

Bidding guidelines for OPL

  • The Department of Petroleum Resources will advertise all blocks available for bidding in the National Dailies and Magazines; international publications approved by the government and dedicated websites for bidding rounds.
  • Interested investors will be required to pay the sum of US $10,000 for a bid processing fee.
  • The bidders will be required to provide details of their shareholding structure, names of directors, track record in the oil and gas sector, audited financial statements, partnership or collaborations with indigenous firms and financial resources to bid and pay for oil acreages
  • After this stage, investors will pay the US $15,000 each for data mining fees to enable them to gain access to the relevant data on acreages that will be placed on the offers.
  • Investors will also avail information on the size of the fields, seismic surveys and past appraisals conducted among other information.
  • The department of petroleum resources will commence a technical evaluation on the bids submitted and where investors fail to meet the criteria, they will be dropped while investors that have passed the technical evaluation process will be invited to submit their commercial bids in a process that will be opened to the public
  • Finally, the oil acreages will be given to the highest bidders who will be given a timeline to pay for the acreages

Procedure for acquiring grant of OPL

  • The applicant is expected to pay a non-refundable fee of US $10,000 per block.
  • The applicant will also pay the annual rent of $10 per sq km
  • Certificate of incorporation of the company
  • Evidence of financial standing to the tune of US $10,000,000 or N1,000,000,000.00
  • Evidence of the applicants’ technical knowledge in oil prospecting.
  • Evidence of detailed environmental policies referencing environmental impact assessment analyses
  • Evidence of payment of all necessary fees
  • Where the minister is satisfied with the information provided, it will permit the Department of Petroleum resources to grant the permit.
  • The holder upon grant is expected to start the geographical investigation within six months of the grant on the area leased.
  • The holder of the OPL license is also required to train Nigerians on the act of drilling and production of crude oil; the holder also has financial obligations to pay rents and loyalties as stipulated by the Petroleum Profit Tax Act

Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) License for Telecommunications

This license is given to companies that make communication possible. These companies are in charge of ensuring that data is transferred to any point in the world by placing infrastructures at different locations. In order to acquire a NCC license for two groups which are the individual license and the class license, the following are the requirements:

  • Duly completed application in the prescribed form in three copies
  • Copy of certificate of incorporation and other incorporation documents
  • Current Tax Clearance Certificate but if it is a new company, a letter indicating tax waiver should be obtained and attached to the application
  • Passport photographs of an authorized representative.
  • Feasibility report of proposed services to be rendered by the company

Mining license for solid mineral

Ministry of Mines and Steel Development (MMSD) are responsible for the issuance of mining licenses and permit. The two major mining licenses in Nigeria that should be obtained by companies engaging in the mining industry are Possess or Purchase License and Mineral Buying Centre license.

The requirements for a Possess or Purchase License includes:

  • Certificate of Incorporation of the Company and other incorporation documents
  • Application letter stating the type of minerals to be possessed or purchased
  • Evidence of technically competent person such as Geologist with COMEG accreditation.
  • Tax clearance certificate of the company
  • Attestation of non-conviction for a criminal offence by a Legal Practitioner
  • Banker’s Reference Letter
  • Letter of consent from a Mineral title holder to be possessed or purchased
  • Payment of prescribed fee
  • The requirements for purchasing a Mineral buying license includes:
  • A warehouse for storage
  • Certificate of Incorporation of the Company and other incorporation documents
  • Application letter stating the type of minerals to be possessed or purchased
  • Evidence of technically competent person such as Geologist with COMEG accreditation.
  • Tax clearance certificate of the company
  • Attestation of non-conviction for a criminal offence by a Legal Practitioner
  • Banker’s Reference Letter
  • Letter of consent from a Mineral title holder to be possessed or purchased
  • Payment of prescribed fee

In order to export your minerals to other countries, you will need to acquire a mineral export permit.  The requirements for obtaining a mineral export permit includes the following:

  • License to Possess or Purchase mineral resources
  • Application letter stating the quantity, type and destination of the mineral resources to be exported
  • Export Certificate from the Nigeria Export Promotion Council
  • Evidence of payment of royalties to the Federal Government.
  • Payment of prescribed fees

National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA) License

The NESREA license is issued to business organizations and industrial facilities whose activities may have potential impact on the environment in order for them to be environmental friendly. NESREA categorized her environmental permits into 5 main categories which are:

  • Air Quality Permit relating to issues on Atmospheric Emissions, Vehicular Emissions, Open Burning, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning equipment (RAC), and Noise
  • Waste and Toxic Substances Permit relating to issues on Waste Generation, Restricted Chemicals, Sludge Disposal and Effluent Discharge
  • Used Electrical and Electronic Equipment (UEEE) Permit relating handling, import and export of UEEE
  • Biodiversity Conservation Permit relating to issues on Assess to Genetic Resources.
  • Eco-Guard Certification
  • The following requirements are needed for acquiring a NESREA license:
  • Receipts of payment for the Processing Fees;
  • Payment receipt (official revenue receipt) from NESREA Office nearest to the company’s facility or area of operation for the Processing Fee
  • Certificate of Incorporation after registration with the Corporation Affairs Commission (CAC)
  • Tax Clearance for the last 3 years
  • Evidence of Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)
  • Environmental Management Plan (EMP)
  • Environmental Audit Report (EAR)
  • Monthly Monitoring Report for Last 3 Months- where applicable

Liquor License

A liquor license is needed for any producer or manufacturer that wants to produce liquor in Nigeria. The following are the documents needed to obtain a liquor license in Nigeria.

  • A completed application Form and application fee.
  • Copy of Certificate of Incorporation for a company or registration certificate in case of individuals or partnership applicant.
  • Certified copies of Forms and copies of share certificates of the company directors and shareholders.
  • Proof of availability of business premises (written undertaking lease in lieu of agreement or tittle deed).
  • Proof of advertisement in Nigeria Government Gazette, and bring a stamped copy of receipt according to Regulation 3 (2) of the Liquor Act, 1999.
  • The Control Authority shall not consider an application for a licence where both the first and second notice of the application was not published for at least 21 days, in accordance with Section 13 of the Liquor Act, 1999.
  • Certified copies of valid ID for citizens and passport for non-citizen directors and shareholders.
  • Certified copies of valid work and residence permit for non-citizen managers.
  • A covering letter explaining how the business would operate and provide itemized list of goods and services.
  • Satisfactory Physical Planners report for zoning of the plot.
  • Satisfactorily Environmental Health report for the business premises from Federal state Council Health Inspectors.
  • In the case when a producer or manufacturer is outside Nigeria, such shall be represented in Nigeria by a duly registered Nigerian company with facilities. In order to import liquor into the country, the following documentation and procedures are needed to be carried out:
  • Foreign manufacturers must be represented in Nigeria by a duly registered company or individual with the capacity to effect a product recall when necessary.
  • NAFDAC considers the local representative to be fully responsible for all matters on the product, such as registration, distribution re-calls, legal actions etc.
  • The Nigerian importer/distributor must file evidence of a Power of Attorney from the manufacturer, which authorizes him to be the representative in Nigeria.
  • A certificate of manufacture and free sale issued by a competent health authority, authenticated by the Nigerian Embassy in the country of origin. Product license or evidence of product registration in the country of origin is an added advantage.
  • All importers must submit the certificate of registration of brand name/ trademark with the trademark Registry in the Ministry of Commerce in Nigeria. This is done in the name of the owner of the trademark to protect the owner.
  • A NAFDAC application form duly completed by the local agent (importer) for the registration of each regulated product.
  • Fifteen product samples (twenty in the case of dairy products) depending on pack size must be provided to NAFDAC for physical/laboratory analysis and vetting which takes about four to eight weeks.
  • Permit must be obtained to import limited quantities for the purpose of registration.
  • A comprehensive certificate of product analysis issued by the manufacturer.
  • A letter of invitation for the inspection of factory to be submitted by the applicant in Nigeria and shall state the full location address of the manufacturer, name of contact person, E-mail address, current phone and fax numbers.

The license is valid for 5 years.

Private university license

The National Universities Commission (NUC) is vested with the power to regulate the establishment and monitoring of Nigerian Universities (Federal, state and private universities). The Standing Committee on Private Universities (SCOPU) will also be involved in the processing and acquisition of the private university license. The following are the requirements for obtaining a private university license:

  • You will proceed to forward the completed application forms to NUC with another non- refundable prescribed processing fee of N5, 000,000 bank draft in favour of NUC for processing your application.
  • Draft academic brief
  • Draft physical masterplan
  • Draft university law
  • Counterpart deed of assignment
  • Certificate of incorporation or Registration of Proprietors which will be accompanied with the Memorandum and Articles of Association)
  • Deed of assignment or certificate of occupancy
  • Letter of available liquid cash
  • Bank guarantee of funds to the tune of N200, 000,000 from a reputable bank
  • It is usually advised that the last two (2) documents (Letter of available liquid cash and the Bank guarantee of funds to the tune of N200, 000,000 from a reputable bank) should not be procured by the applicants until processing of the application has reached an advanced stage

Private polytechnic license

The NBTE is the body responsible for granting licenses to those willing to establish a private polytechnic in Nigeria. The following are the requirements:

  • Application Form: (Obtainable at NBTE, Kaduna)
  • Master Plan
  • Academic Plan
  • Needs Assessment/Feasibility Survey
  • 10 Hectares of Land in the Name of the Institution
  • N100, 000, 000 (One hundred million Naira) bank guarantee
  • Certificate of Occupancy in the name of the Institution.
  • Financial Plan.

We support our client with procuring licenses and permits and would be glad to be of help to those  who may require it. We engage in the process of obtaining special licenses, registrations and permits. Kindly reach out to us on 08023200801, You may also send us a detailed request on contact form by completing same

If you have any licenses/permit/registrations that we have missed. Let us know in the comment section below

About the author

Onamakinde Dare Daniel is a  highly motivated accountant with knowledge in Accounting, Taxation, Management, Audit, Costing and Research. He is keen on tax matters due to its ever dynamic nature. 

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