Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) Commissioner General, Berlin Msiska, says the investment of scanners in borders will help yield additional revenue for government. And ZRA Commissioner for Customs, Dingani Banda, says the introduction of the scanner will enable the authority to take five minutes only to inspect a truck, not five hours as was the case in the past. Commissioning a non-intrusive inspection equipment or scanner at Chanida border on Tuesday, Msiska said the equipment would help in facilitating trade.
He said instead of carrying out several physical inspections as was the case previously, ZRA would now be using a scanner.
“Through the use the scanner, we might get possible concealment in the trucks, but what we now intend to do, which we have always done as ZRA is that where we find that goods are being smuggled into the country, we are going to take stern action against those in borders. This will include an aspect of prosecution. Now, we have also intensified operations inland in that we have established a mobile compliance unit to deal with the inland enforcement of certain smuggled commodities,” Msiska said.
He said the scanner would also enable ZRA to carryout risk-based scanning services. He said the equipment would help expedite the process of clearing at the border. Msiska said the equipment whose total investment was US$5.2 million was set up by Nuctech, a Chinese firm.
And Banda said the implementation of the scanner at Chanida border would help ZRA in a number of ways. He said previously, if they suspected that a truck could be carrying goods that might require physical inspection, they would take an average of five hours to do the inspection.
“Now, with the scanning technology, it takes less five minutes for us to do a physical inspection of a truck and for a station like Chanida where we have an average of 40 to 50 trucks coming in and going out of the country on a daily basis, this will help us in terms of the turnaround in the inspection and it will enhance our inefficiencies,” Banda said.
He said ZRA already had similar infrastructure at Chirundu, Katimamulilo and Kazungula borders. Banda said ZRA was also expecting rail scanners at both Kapiri-Mposhi and Kasumbalesa. Comment – Seems like another ‘juicy’ deal for the Chinese – Nuctech?
He also said other scanners were under construction at Mwami and Nakonde borders. Chanida border post is the main gateway to neighbouring Mozambique. Source: The Post Online (Zambia)
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