Five Kenyan Authorised Economic Operators (AEOs), have received East African Community certification following recommendations by the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA).
The five companies are Isuzu East Africa Ltd, Kuehne Nagel Limited, Bollore Africa Logistics, Ufanisi Freighters Limited and Farmers Choice Limited. They received the regional recognition at the World Customs Organization (WCO) 4th Global AEO Conference held from 14th to 16th March 2018 in Kampala, Uganda.
Speaking during the WCO conference, KRA Commissioner General Mr John Njiraini said that KRA has made deliberate efforts to facilitate pre-arrival release processes for the AEOs. He added that more than 60 percent of regional trade transactions pass through Kenya and the country is committed to ensuring there is a smooth transit of goods. He further noted that the launch of the Integrated Customs Management System (iCMS) will enable the AEOs to enjoy automatic cargo release.
The inclusion of the five companies brings to 14 the number of Kenyan organisations, out of 73 in the region, that enjoy premium Customs services while trading within the EAC. Some of the benefits the AEOs get include the automatic passing of declaration, guaranteed renewal of Customs license, self-management of a bonded warehouse, and priority treatment in cargo clearance chain amongst others.
While the cargo release time has generally reduced to seven days due to the reforms in Kenya and specifically in KRA, AEOs enjoy the highest turnaround time of three days for processing release. The AEO programme has also helped in reducing storage cost for traders by 30 percent.