European Union Proposes ‘Getaway Corridor’ Project to Combat Illicit Trafficking

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In a bid to tackle the rampant issue of illicit trafficking and smuggling across borders, the European Union (EU) unveiled a groundbreaking initiative aimed at enhancing law enforcement and trade facilitation at the Nigeria Customs Service Headquarters in Abuja on 16 April 2024.

The project, titled “Getaway Corridor,” according to EU representatives Louis Jacques Blondiau and Thierry Thimon, is set to cover ten countries, including Nigeria, with the goal of curbing illicit activities on the borders and suppressing smuggling operations.

Louis Jacques Blondiau, the leader of the group, emphasised that the Getaway Corridor project entails the development of a road infrastructure network designed to serve as a gateway for combating anti-smuggling activities while promoting trade facilitation. According to him, “each participating country will designate a specific zone for the project’s execution, which will involve four key phases: identification, implementation, evaluation, and project ownership, ensuring alignment with local needs and priorities.”

During the meeting, the Comptroller-General of Customs (CGC), Bashir Adewale Adeniyi, commended the EU’s initiative, acknowledging its potential to significantly enhance the effectiveness of law enforcement efforts in Nigeria. He pledged the full support of the Nigeria Customs Service and other relevant agencies in ensuring the successful execution of the project.

“The proposed Getaway Corridor project marks a significant step towards strengthening international cooperation in combating illicit flows and promoting trade security within the region. With the commitment of both the EU and Nigerian authorities, it is poised to make a meaningful impact in curbing illegal activities and fostering sustainable development,” the CGC stated.