The process of getting an ecowas trade liberalization scheme license for your products exports is simple but cumbersome.

The Economic community of west African states (Ecowas countries are Nigeria, Ghana, Benin, Côte d’Ivoire, Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Togo, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde.

In order to qualify for the scheme,sixty percent of the products must originate from the ecowas region,and thirty percent must have value addition for products.


The objectives of this ecowas trade liberalization scheme license is to give african entrepreneurs within the ecowas region free trade opportunity.

  1. The ETLS will guarantee business men(exporters/importers)free movement of goods and persons between member countries
  2. No quantitative restrictions
  3. Total exemption from import duties and taxes
  4. Non-payment of compensation for loss of revenue for items (ii) and (iii) as a result of their importation

The Process of getting a license of ecowas trade liberalization scheme:

The following steps are what an importer or exporter from an Ecowas region(Nigeria) needs to process his ETLS license .

if your products are sourced or originated from Ecowas region,you can begin the process.

i. find An accredited cac Agent

ii. Provide The Necessary information to the cac agent

ii. Register Your business with cac

iv. Obtain your certificate of incorporation from cac.

v. If you are using an agent,the agent purchases registration application forms from NEPC.

Vi.The Agent Fills the Necessary forms for you as an Exporter or Importer.

vii.The agent submits the forms with the accompanying documents such as certificate of incorporation from cac,the memorandum and articles of association of the company,cac 07,particulars of directors.

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iv.The Agent submits the application to the Nigerian export promotion council .

The council will revert to the application,after due consideration.


Renewing the license of the ecowas liberalization scheme is easy if you use an agent.

i. Submit Your Cac certificate of registration to the Agent

ii. Exporter writes application for renewal using company’s letter head

iii. Agent submits to NEPC along with the following forms: a) Form CO7 (Particulars of Directors), b) NXP Form.
iv. Exporter pays renewal/revalidation fees

v. NEPC verifies and validates documents submitted.

vi. NEPC will issue Certificate of Registration if all requirements are satisfied.

vii. NEPC will issue Compliance Directives if the criteria are not met.

The Process of obtaining the license will also involve other government agencies such as SON,NAFDAC if you are a Nigerian exporter.

Now you will need to obtain the MANCAP CERTIFICATE from SON.

If you using an Agent, the agent visits the SON office,to obtain the necessary forms.the agent will submit along the certificate of incoporation and the forms.

it is important to note that the SON Technical agents will pay a visit to your company to inspect the production site.

After the inspection and examination of products ,the SON agent takes sample and forward to their superior officer. the MANCAP certificate will be issued where the criteria is met or a directive will be issued where the criteria was not met.

There are categories of people ,the ETLS targets,they are exporters of the following products

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Agricultural goods
i. Livestock
ii. Unprocessed goods
ii. Artisanal Handicrafts
iv. Industrial goods

The exporter from an Ecowas Country to Another Ecowas Country, for example a Nigerian exporter needs to process the certificate of origin from Nigeria,(NACCIMA) is the Government agency that issues this certificate.

An importer from an ECOWAS region that sources sixty percent of its products from the country,must apply for certificate of origin from the relevant government in that country.


A Nigerian exporter that manufactures products such as Agricultural goods like Livestock,Unprocessed goods,Artisanal Handicrafts,Industrial goods. the exporter must obtain Application form from NACCIIMA .

The Exporter will fill the Certificate of Origin application form providing details of his/her enterprise
and the export transaction for which the exporter is seeking the Certificate of Origin.

The Exporter is expected to submit along the certificate of incorporation,Nafdac certificate,and then payment of processing fees.

Upon Review by the the Nigerian Approval Committee will approve and issue the importer the certificate of origin.


A Nigerian Exporter wishing to move his/her goods from Nigeria to other ecowas countries,will have to follow the due process to getting his certificate of incorporation from cac,the Nafdac certificate,the certificate of Origin from NACCIMA, ETLS Approval Letter issued by the ECOWAS Commission through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs,ECOWAS Export Declaration Form issued by the Nigeria Customs Services.
NB.Once these documents have been confirmed by the Customs authorities, and relevant
permits shown, the goods can enter the importing country duty free and unhindered.

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