Nigerian sesame seeds export for international buyers

Top 11 Nigerian Non-Oil Products You Can Start Exporting To Countries That Buy Them Most

Last Updated on November 23, 2021 by Ope Quadri

There are more than 20 Nigerian non-oil products foreign buyers are searching for in the international market, you can tap from this goldmine if only you can find the right channel and know which products sell most in your target market.

The point is: Nigeria’s economic dependence on crude oil export is an indication that hundreds of business opportunities are untapped and the only way to rake in millions of naira in revenue from exporting business in Nigeria is:

1) to know the process involved,

2) the required documentation,

3) agricultural products with the highest demand from other countries around the world.

Why Nigeria’s Exporting Business Is a Goldmine

Between 2016 to 2018, Nigeria’s agriculture exports were below 2%.

What does this mean?

This means the sector has not been fully explored, the market is huge for you despite the security challenges.

Despite the low export and due to the fact that the focus of the leadership is on crude oil proceeds (except President Muhammadu Buhari who is trying to diversify from crude oil to non-oil products), the agriculture industry in 2018 contributed approximately 25% to total Gross Domestic Product (GDP), according to PWC in its 8-page report entitled, “Unlocking Nigeria’s Agricultural Exports”.

Our View

Nigeria can actually make more from agriculture than crude oil, if the government pay the needed attention and give it necessary incentives and supports for farmers.

In 2019, the most populous African country rake in $10.4 billion as revenue from exports.

Between March 2019 – March 2020, Sesame Seeds, cocoa beans, and cashew nuts contributed N112.8 billion, N109.6 billion, and N38.2 billion respectively.

The above data shows that the agriculture sector is the largest contributor to Nigeria’s GDP and more can still be made from non-oil products if the government can fix security.

Important Documents Required To Export from Nigeria

Export in this guide means sales of a large number of non-oil products to consumers or manufacturers of raw materials to finished products around the world.

To get started, the documents below (which are also sub-divided into sections) will be required at different stages of your business:

  1. Company Registration Documents
  2. Exporter Registration Document
  3. Export Contract Document
  4. Commercial Documents
  5. Financial Documents
  6. Goods Movement Documents
  7. Quality Assurance Documents

Obtaining the above documents is a hurdle you must cross one after the other, follow us as we take you through the process.

Company Registration Documents

Your first step if you want to make your business go global is to register your company with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), which is available at:

After company registration, your next point of call is the Nigerian Export Promotion Council to apply and obtain an export licence, which is done online.

Export Contract Document

This is the simplest of them all because this document is prepared by you and your buyer in the destination country. In simple terms, it’s an export contract between the seller and buyer.

Commercial Documents

This is subdivided into:

  • Proforma Invoice
  • Commercial invoice
  • Packing list

It is your responsibility as the exporter to prepare and issue the above documents.

The proforma Invoice contains the quantity and price of the products you want to export.

While commercial invoice indicates the value of goods for export in the currency of transaction, packing list outlines the total quantity and unit of products for export.

Financial Documents

The exporter (from the originating country) and the importer (in the destination country) are involved in preparing these documents.

One, it is evidence of financial transaction between buyer and seller; Two, the document enables authority in Nigeria to track the movement of cash to ensure that it conforms with the financial regulation for exports.

The financial documents contain the following:

  • Commercial Invoice
  • NXP form
  • Final Invoice

Commercial Invoice

This is a customs document prepared by you (the exporter ) to indicate the value of the goods for export in the currency of the transaction. You need the commercial invoice to process NXP.

NXP Form:

Also known as the Nigeria Export Proceed form, it shows the value of the export transaction. It enables the government to gain access to the volume of export and its impact on Nigeria’s economy.

Not just that, it also enables exporter to gain access to export incentive when it’s available.

Final Invoice

This is also issued by the exporter. It shows the actual value of the goods exported in the currency of transaction for the purpose of payment by the importer

Goods Movement Documents

This is the stage where you have the highest number of documents because this stage deals with all aspects of the delivery of the goods from the seller in Nigeria to the buyer in the receiving country which are:

  • Clean Certificate of Inspection (CCI)
  • Certificate of Weight and Quality
  • Certificate of Origin
  • Bill of Lading
  • Air Way Bill
  • Road Transport Bill
Goods Movement Documents Issuer Importance
Clean Certificate of Inspection (CCI) Pre-Shipment Inspection Agencies (PIAs) appointed by FG The CCI certifies the quality, quantity, and price competitiveness of the exports
Certificate of Weight and Quality Independent quality assessors like Bureau Veritas and SGS This document clearly states the quality of the products and goods to be exported to ensure that they meet the standards as stated in the contract of agreement
Certificate of Origin National Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA) It shows the origin of goods like trade agreement benefits
Bill of Lading Shipping agencies Also known as shipping document, it outlines the details of goods transported by sea
Air Way Bill Airlines eg DHL It shows the details of goods transported by air
Road Transport Bill Logistics companies eg freight companies It shows the details of goods transported by road

Quality Assurance Documents

The goods to be exported must conform to safety measures as stated by international conventions, as such, the exported products must be certified by the Quality Competent Authority (QCAs) globally recognised.

Some of the international recognised bodies that issue quality assurance documents in Nigeria include:

  • Nigeria Agricultural Quarantine Services (NAQS),
  • National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) if it’s drug or food-related products;
  • if it’s animal products, Department of Veterinary and Pest Control Services (DVPCS) etc.

The importance of using internationally recognised QCAs are:

1) it gives the international buyer the assurance meets the prescribed standard,

2) it gives the buyer the assurance that the goods meet the health standard.

So, you are done with documentation, to think that it’s easy as outlined in this guide would be erroneous. There are several challenges you are most likely to encounter. Some of them are:

  • Bureaucracy during application for quality checks on the products to be exported
  • Customs and taxes
  • Difficulty in finding reliable suppliers
  • Logistics costs
  • Issue of meeting international standards
  • Problem of documentation
  • Unstable government policies due to change of power and poor continuity of policies

Advice to exporters:

You must take the logistics and documentation process seriously because they can make or mar an international export business.

Corroborating the above advice, the Chief Executive Officer of the NEPC, Olusegun Awolowo, in 2021 workshops on non-oil export logistics Kano and Lagos tagged “Non-oil export logistics” said “You have a good product but have not documented it well, not only will you lose money, but the products will be seized by the customs or destroyed.

“Your product may be wonderful, you might have a good contract, but if the products do not get to their final destination with the appropriate documents, you might not get a deal for your export and this is why we have come to change the narratives,” Director, Trade Information, NEPC, Mrs. Evelyn Obidike, who represented Mr Awolowo stated.

Top Non-Oil Products You Can Export from Nigeria

You’ve done your market research on how to source for the products to export, you have enough information about who to sell to, and you’ve obtained a CAC certificate for your business and got an exporter certificate.

It’s time to know which one among the several raw products you can explore and sell to international buyers.

Below is a table of the list of most sought products you can start selling and the countries where the products are in high demand.

The first five products are based on the data obtained from the Bureau of statics which states that Nigeria made N289.3 billion from the sales of non-oil exports between April 2019 to March 2020

Top Products You Can Export From Nigeria Countries where you can find buyers
Sesamum seeds Japan,



India, and


Cocoa Beans Germany,





Malaysia, and


Cashew nuts (In shell and shelled) Vietnam,



Russia and

The Netherlands

Frozen shrimps and prawns Netherlands,





Natural cocoa butter Germany


Nigerian Ginger Germany





Palm Kernel USA




The Netherlands

African textiles eg Adire, ankara China





Rubber Netherlands





Garlic Brazil


United States



Yam Tubers USA


United Kingdom





From the aforementioned key documents, it’s imperative to note you will need 19 documents in total to export any product from Nigeria to any part of the world. They are:

  1. Certificate of Incorporation
  2. Certified True Copy of Memorandum and Articles of Association
  3. Current Certified True Copy of Company registration
  4. Form CAC 7
  5. Export licence issued NEPC
  6. export contract
  7. Porforma Invoice
  8. Commercial invoice
  9. Packing list
  10. NXP form
  11. Final Invoice
  12. Commercial Invoice
  13. Clean Certificate of Inspection (CCI)
  14. Certificate of Weight and Quality
  15. Certificate of Origin
  16. Bill of Lading
  17. Air Way Bill
  18. Road Transport Bill
  19. Quality Assurance Documents by QCAs

Above all, you can use this guide to export any agricultural produce to the USA, Canada, and other top importers of no-oil products around the world.

What we can do for you:


  • Featured Image credit: Maksym Kaharlytskyi of



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