Clearance of consolidated cargo made easier as Government gazettes deconsolidation facilities

By Samuel Migele

More than 7,500 small scale traders in Nairobi and the environs will

now find it easier to collect their goods from the Kenya Railways

Corporation (Boma Line) transit shed after the government gazettes the

facility to deconsolidate cargo.

In a bid to facilitate easy and faster clearance of cargo, the

Government of Kenya, through the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) has

gazetted various facilities to be used for deconsolidation and

clearance of cargo imported by Small Scale traders.

All cargo consolidated at the countries of export, will, upon

importation into the country be deconsolidated at facilities designated

for that purpose. Effective Monday 8th February 2021, all consolidated

cargo imported by sea and transported to Nairobi through the Standard

Gauge Railway, will be deconsolidated, cleared, and collected by the

owners at the Kenya Railways Corporation (Boma Line) Transit Shed.

The shed, also known as ‘Boma line’ has been set up as part of

government efforts to facilitate and enhance ease of doing business.

The facility will also reduce the cost of doing business for small

traders. The facility will serve traders in Nairobi and its environs

while facilitating easy access of their goods.

Cargo designated for other parts of the country will be deconsolidated

at the other designated facilities. The owners of the consignment will

collect their cargo from the deconsolidated centres.

The small traders will now not pay the USD1000 as container deposits

which will subsequently reduce the cost of doing business.

Establishment of the ‘Boma Line’ is part of initiatives to bring

services closer to taxpayers and facilitate them to conduct their

business effectively and efficiently. For instance, going forward

traders from far areas such as Nanyuki and Sagana will no longer incur

huge transport costs to ferry their goods from ICDN as this shade will

be easily accessible.

Cargo for the SMEs will be transported from Kilindini Port to ICDN,

Embakasi, and later transshipped to the Transit Shed using Metre Gauge

Railway (MGR). At the shed, consolidated cargo will be stripped from

containers and stored in Customs shed while being arranged according to

their nature with marking for easy tracking and identification.

The verification by Customs officers and other Government agencies will

be done on these specific single goods as opposed to the typical

verification of a whole container. This therefore means that cargo

verification process will be simplified and there will be a great

improvement on the verification turnaround time.

Traders with goods of Customs value of USD 10,000 or less will now be

allowed to make an import declaration on a simplified Mobile App or a

direct assessment entry, while those with goods of Customs value above

USD 10,000 will clear through a registered clearing agent in the

Customs system.

The Transit Shed is expected to serve approximately 7, 500 small

traders in Nairobi and its environs and will accommodate approximately

100-40 foot containers per month raking in an approximate revenue of

Ksh110 Million.

The number of containers being cleared at the facility is later

expected to increase to approximately 300 containers per month during

the post Covid period. This will enable the country to collect revenue

of approximately Ksh1 Billion. The shed is expected to operate on a 24

hours basis during the post Covid-19 period.

Importers, cargo consolidators and their clearing agents are required

to fully comply and provide correct information to Customs to avoid the

contravention of Sections 203 (a) and (b) of the East African Customs

Management Act (EACCMA) 2004 that makes it an offence to make a false

declaration of any kind.

This project is a joint initiative between the Kenya Revenue Authority

(KRA) and Kenya Railways Corporation (KRC) following the launch of a

Container Freight Station (CFS) by his Excellency President Uhuru

Kenyatta at the KRC Transit shed, Nairobi in November 2020.

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