21-point agenda to develop Port of Mombasa into a world class trade facilitator
The quest to make Mombasa the business gateway to East Africa received a major boost today following a successful port users stakeholder meeting chaired by H.E. the President Dr. William Ruto.
Various stakeholders, including shippers, transporters, exporters, importers, Parliamentary leadership, Kenya Government agencies, Uganda Government representatives, and representatives from other neighboring countries had a chance to discuss in-depth issues affecting trade and Impediments to seamless port operations.
The objective was how to maximize capacity and infrastructure to make every port user get the best opportunity and access efficient services. The Government is keen to ensure the Port runs effectively, efficiently, and commercially sound.
The Government committed to harmonizing all the systems to create a lot more efficiencies.
The Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Investments, Trade and Industry Hon. Moses K. Kuria articulated 21 stakeholder issues to deliver world-class trade facilitation as follows;
- Implementation of Pre-arrival Clearance & Streamlining of the Export Processes;
- Adoption of global best practices in transshipment, in terms of operations and procedures in order to attract more transshipment business through the ports of Mombasa and Lamu;
- Responsible agency to take responsibility for any unreasonable delays arising from their respective system downtime;
- Both the Government and private sectors involved in cargo clearance at the Port to facilitate cargo clearance 24/7 and over the weekends;
- Eliminate non-tariff barriers including weigh-bridges, county cess fees, and enhancing security. Towards this end, the President directed that transit cargo be weighed only twice and full elimination of roadblocks on the transit corridor;
- Review and harmonize charges levied by various shipping lines as well as regulation of arbitrary charges introduced by other cargo interveners;
- Re-introduce local repair of local containers which will not only create jobs but also generate revenue for the Country;
- Reduce the Currently over 600 long-stay containers at the port yards, over 1,000 long-stay containers, and over 1,000 long-stay motor vehicles at the various Containers Freight Stations (CFSs)
- Procurement of additional drive-through scanners through private partnerships
- The re-introduction of bunkering operations (Ship to Ship, Off-shore bunkering outside Port limits (OPL)), at the Port of Mombasa. Towards this end, the president directed that this be fast tracked;
- Fast-track the Customs Regulations bill will lead and enhance predictability in revenue collection from customs agents, enhancing compliance levels and professionalism.
- All processes on cargo intervention should be carried offsite, and the duplication of roles at the wrong place (port) by various agencies such as Port Health, KEPHIS, and KEBS among other agencies are to be eliminated to avoid unnecessary delays;
- Duplication of levies collected by Government agencies e.g., on imported rice by KEPHIS, KEBS, PORT HEALTH, all levies to be harmonized for collection under the Kentrade system;
- Suggestion for all three Government institutions to adopt a harmonized standard to avoid mismatch and discrepancies in vehicle age limits between KRA, NTSA & KEBS e.g., block year for year of manufacture of motor vehicles;
- Review VISA and work permit requirements for DRC; the President committed to ensuring this is implemented immediately;
- Compliance with EAC harmonized truck entry fees on trucks crossing to Kenya from Uganda and Tanzania by member states;
- Collection of fuel levy destined for DRC;
- Establishment of a centralized sampling center at the Port of Mombasa;
- Incorporation of a cargo dwell time dashboard for public access under the KPA system;
- Review of the practice by shipping lines getting involved in the formation of subsidiary companies that deal in clearing and forwarding, logistics, and transport chain; Towards this end, the President directed this to be effected immediately;
- Hosting of Kenya International Freight and Warehousing Association (KIFWA) is scheduled to host the global conference in November 2023. The event attracts key logistics and trade players from across the globe and will position Kenya on the global logistics front. The event is expected to attract about 1,000 participants drawn from the global logistics and transport sectors.
Agencies committed to ensuring all cross-cutting and specific stakeholder issues would be addressed immediately.
Present were Prime Cabinet Secretary, Hon. Musalia Mudavadi, H.E. Gov. Anne Waiguru E.G.H Chairperson Council of Governors, Hon. Moses K. Kuria HSC, Cabinet Secretary Ministry of Investments, Trade, and Industry, Hon. Kipchumba Murkomen, E.G.H., Cabinet Secretary - Ministry of Roads and Transport, Salim Mvurya Cabinet Secretary Ministry of Mining, Blue Economy and Maritime Affairs, Peter Munyiri Chairman National Standards Council, Benjamin Tayari Chairman Kenya Ports Authority, Antony Mwaura Chairman Kenya Revenue Authority, Captain William Ruto Managing Director Kenya Ports Authority, Mombasa Governor, H.E Abdullswamad Sherrif Nassir, Majority Leader in the National Assembly, Hon. Kimani Ichungwa, PS Industry Dr. Juma Mukhwana, PS Trade Alfred K’Ombundo and PS Investments Abubakar Hassan Abubakar among others.