THE Kenyan government could be losing millions of shillings in revenue to the Ugandan government through the Single Customs Territory, according to the Kenya International Freight and Warehousing Association.
Kifwa yesterday said Uganda is capitalising on the SCT, which has seen Kenyans prefer its Asycuda system to the Kenyan Simba system to clear goods at the port of Mombasa.
According to Kifwa, trade patterns are favouring Uganda because it is cheaper to import goods to the land-locked country than Kenya.
Under the SCT, revenue for transactions made under the Asycuda system goes to Uganda. The goods are then imported back into the country.
Speaking to the Star yesterday, Kifwa national chairman Boaz Makomere said Kenyans have gone ahead to partnered with their Uganda counterparts to form companies in Uganda.
“Importing a 20-foot container to Uganda you pay $2,500 (Sh226,200) to Uganda Revenue Authority compared to $10,000 (Sh904,800) on the same commodity in Kenya. People are now importing to Uganda because the SCT has provided a platform. The goods then find their way back into the country and KRA is losing out on this,” he said.
A section of the business community lauded the launch of the tripartite SCT by the East African member state, saying it would boost regional integration and reduce costs doing business.
The five countries have entered into the new customs arrangement that allows regional countries that use the port of Mombasa to collect duty at the entry point. However, Kifwa maintains that this should be suspended.
Source : The Star