TRADE BRIEFS

TRADE BRIEFS

NIGERIAN IMPORT DUTIES

CUT ACROSS THE BOARD

Nigeria has cut import duties 35 percent across the board, effective immediately, in an attempt to prevent the diversion of overseas shipments to ports in neighboring Benin.

The move follows the government's review earlier this year of the tariff structure and the decision to bring all customs duties to the range of 5 percent to 50 percent.

The review was triggered by complaints that imports for Nigeria are being diverted to the neighboring countries where duties and clearing charges are lower.

6 FIRMS IN JAPAN PLAN

NUMERICAL-CONTROL R&D

TOKYO - Six companies in Japan will jointly develop a next-generation numerical-control technology to allow factory robots and machine tools to be controlled by personal computers, the Nihon Keizai Shimbun reported Monday.

Toyoda Machine Works Ltd., Toshiba Machine Co., IBM Japan Ltd., Mitsubishi Electric Co., Yamazaki Mazak Ltd., and SML Co. aim to draw up detailed specifications for the new NC devices by the end of the year and hope to commercialize the technology as early as autumn 1996.

The companies will use the Internet to invite other companies to join the project. The NC devices are to be promoted as cost-cutting equipment for manufacturing.

A trial NC product, which would use general purpose operating software and computer language for data input, will go public this month.