KRA seeks to certify export packing zones

Market News

KRA seeks to certify export packing zones


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KRA headquarters at Times Tower in Nairobi. FILE PHOTO | NMG

The Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) will certify business premises to pack and clear cargo for export to ease congestion at government-owned facilities which are currently being exclusively used for this task.

Business premises wishing to be declared as Export Stuffing Zones (ESZs) must have surveillance cameras capable of storing data for at least 60 days in addition to having their businesses secured through electric fences.

Currently, the KRA has designated government-owned facilities as ESZs mainly the inland container depots. The facilities have in recent times come under pressure due to an increase in export volumes.

“The owner shall keep a record of all goods examined, stuffed and delivered from the stuffing facility for verification by Customs at all times,” the taxman says in a brief.

The shift will also lower costs for traders, especially for those who will now be able to stuff their export cargoes within their premises or neighboring facilities, cutting the costs of logistics.

Kenya has in the past year posted a surge in the volumes of products for the export market further piling pressure on the areas that are designated as ESZs.

The volume of cement meant for the export market jumped 43.7 percent to 172, 523 tonnes last year from 120,023 tonnes in 2020— being one of the products with the highest jump in export cargoes followed by horticulture. Horticulture exports rose to 682,279 tonnes last year from 592,068 tonnes in 2021, reflecting a jump of 15 percent.

The surge in cargo volumes amid limited stuffing zones has exposed traders to losses and higher costs of doing business, especially for the horticulture products that are perishable.

KRA says businesses seeking to be certified as packing zones must also have reliable internet connectivity.

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