Certification Process

Route C : Licensed Products

Route C Certification Process

This route is available only for manufacturers/producers. It is not available for exporters, suppliers and traders. Some of the advantages of obtaining the PC(L) are:

  • Decrease of shipment inspection to at least one (1) shipment every six (6) months
  • Faster SONCAP Certificate (SC) issuance

1. Product Certificate (Licensed); PC(L)

The PC(L) is valid for one year. Licensing of products is based upon detailed product evaluation, including testing, factory audit and regular surveillances. One PC(L) is issued per Product Group. The Product Groups are available in the Product List section. If you have goods pertaining to more than one Product Group, you must get a PC(L) for each Group.The PC (L) is a mandatory document for obtaining a SONCAP Certificate (SC) and it is also needed to pre-declare the import in Nigeria (opening of the Form M).

There are 2 ways to license your product and obtain a PC(L):

  • Upgrade from Route B
    If the manufacturer/producer has successfully accomplished 4 compliant transactions and 2 factory audits under Route B, he will/could be elevated to Route C. This means that the product is elevated to the status of "licensed". Moreover, a complete audit of the production process will be performed at the time of the renewal of the license (1 year later) along with continued surveillance during the validity of the licence.
  • Direct licensing
    The product manufacturer accepts a complete audit of the production process. The exporter must also provide test reports for every product, either from an ISO 17025 laboratory or from the manufacturer laboratory provided that the testing has been witnessed by Cotecna.

    The PC(L) is granted upon:

    • Satisfactory factory audit
    • Reception of product evaluation documents, such as test reports, factory assessment report and QMS certificates.


Cotecna will issue a PC (L).

2. SONCAP Certificate Issuance

The SONCAP Certificate (SC) is valid only for one particular shipment. It is a mandatory document for Customs clearance. The manufacturer / producer must:

  • Complete and send Cotecna the Request for Certification (RFC) form
  • Ensure that all the goods in the shipment are covered by one or more valid Product Certificates.
  • Send final documents to Cotecna

Under Route C, Cotecna will selectively organize the following, for at least one (1) shipment every six (6) months:

  • Physical inspection of the shipment
  • Sample testing: samples are drawn by Cotecna during the inspection of the shipment or under Cotecna supervision at the manufacturer's premises and will be tested as per applicable standards.
  • Acceptance of Test Reports as long as they are issued by:
    • An accredited ISO 17025 laboratory
    • The manufacturer's laboratory if testing was witnessed by Cotecna
  • Loading supervision of Full Container Loads (FCL)
  • Seal of FCL container(s)


Cotecna will deliver a SONCAP Certificate (SC) upon compliance with above requirements.

In the event of non-compliance with the testing and/or inspection requirements, Cotecna shall issue a Non Conformity Report (NCR).