President William Ruto announces several initiatives to enhance port efficiency
President William Ruto announced several initiatives to streamline efficiency of the port of Mombasa and other facilities for full optimization of the maritime transport industry.
In a stakeholder engagement forum at the port of Mombasa over the weekend, president Ruto directed that all critical Partner Government Agencies that play a key role in the cargo clearance processes at the port including Kenya Bureau of Standards, Kenya Revenue Authority, National Transport and Safety Authority to operate 24/7 to complement port services.
Equally private entities like financial institutions that are a crucial link to the process chain have also been urged to comply and ensure that customers are able to access services round the clock.
On the ongoing digitalization project that requires all government services to be available on E-Citizen, the Head of State urged the PGAs to harmonize their individual systems on the platform in the next ninety days.
“There are so many systems in use at the port, since we are consolidating all our digital framework on E-citizen, we should mobilize and harmonize the different systems to ensure they speak to each other and remove silos so that we can create a lot more efficiency."
Another of the challenges raised by the stakeholders is non-tariff barriers along the northern corridor, in part due to multiple weighbridges, Cess fees charged on transporters by the County governments and safety concerns along the northern transport corridor.
Going forward cargo destined for the transit markets will only be weighed twice; at the point of entry, port/ Mariakani and the point of exit at the Malaba border.
To facilitate international trade to enable provision of bunkering services to vessels calling Kenya's ports, president Ruto directed KPA and KRA to work closely and come up with control measures to prevent customs duty leakage and at the same time guarantee availability of fuel at the port.
Under the leadership of Cabinet Secretaries Hon. Kipchumba Murkomen of Roads and Transport, Hon Moses Kuria of Investment Trade and Industry and Hon. Salim Mvurya of Mining, Maritime and Blue Economy, formed an Intergovernmental Steering Committee on Ease of Doing Business in May this year, to identify the challenges that have impeded efficiency at port facilities contributed majorly by government agencies' poor coordination, duplication of roles , regulation challenges in a bid to find common solutions for streamlined and improved services.