19/9/2023: KAM participated in a Stakeholders Workshop focused on the proposed implementation of Pre-Arrival Processing for imports, following the Presidential Directive issued on July 29, 2023. Pre-Arrival Processing (PAP) is a trade facilitation initiative aimed at expediting cargo clearance by submitting the necessary import documents for advance processing by the authorities. This allows clearing agents and importers to submit customs declarations and make payments before the arrival of goods at the port of entry.
PAP brings a higher level of predictability and transparency to cargo clearance procedures, thereby enhancing the business environment. It supports just-in-time delivery, reduces storage and insurance costs, and minimizes other transaction expenses, ultimately leading to increased economic competitiveness.
The workshop’s objectives included mapping out the TO-BE process for key agencies involved in cargo clearance, documenting proposed business rules, and exploring the requirements for system enhancements to accommodate PAP.
Key outcomes from the workshop deliberations included the determination that the Bill of Lading (BL) would serve as the base document for entry declaration in PAP. It was also recognized that there is a need for system enhancements by Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA), Kenya Port Authorities (KPA), and KenTrade, as well as the identification of roles for various stakeholders in the PAP process.
Ms Immaculate Njeru, KRA Chief Manager of Trade Facilitation, delivered the opening remarks on behalf of the Regional Coordinator of the Southern Region. She emphasized the importance of working towards an implementable business process and maintaining system ‘handshakes,’ even with the envisioned enhancements. Additionally, she stressed that the changes to be introduced would run concurrently with the existing procedures to ensure business continuity.
Chief Executive Officer of the Shippers Council of Eastern Africa (SCEA) Gilbert Lang’at, highlighted challenges such as low awareness levels of PAP, particularly in the private sector, and the lack of a clear framework to guide its implementation. He reminded attendees that PAP would have a broader impact on the economic community by increasing efficiency and reducing trade costs, aligning with the desires of the business community.
Participants were also briefed on the PAP initiative, with a focus on the importance of compliance to reap the benefits it offers.