Kenyan importers to be penalised for delays

Nothing like giving stakeholders fair warning of impending fines. Given that the authorities appear to have agreed on ‘all details’ except the cost, lets hope the latter aspect does not come as a nasty surprise when the single window system becomes operational. One would think that price/cost would be one of the first criteria for consideration and approval, not the last.

The government plans to impose penalties on importers who fail or delay to lift their cargo from the port in Mombasa in the ongoing reforms to de-congest the port. Transport minister Amos Kimunya said this is part of the measures being drafted to ensure the port operations are not slowed down by deliberate delays by importers.

“This will encourage people to quickly remove their cargo from the port as soon as it cleared by the authorities” Kimunya told the KPA annual summit in Nairobi on Wednesday. He said this is aimed at reducing the 40 per cent extra cost to consumers, caused by inefficient flow of goods from ports of entry.

The penalties come ahead of the single window system which is expected to facilitate fast and easy flow of export and exports through a seamlessly interconnected platform. According to the chairman of Kenya Trade Network Agency Joseph Kibwana, the single window implementing agency, all the details of the project have been agreed on, except the cost.

Implementation of the first phase for sea and air manifest will start in June 2013 to be followed by the second and third phases in six months intervals. Source: The Star (Nairobi)

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