KRA, clearing agents end row over cargo valuation formula
The two parties resolved to continue using the Kenya Revenue Authority Evaluation formula, which mostly relies on declaration and documents presented by importers
The Kenya Revenue Authority and clearing agents have agreed on a common cargo valuation process. This ends a month-long stalemate that had slowed the movement of cargo at the Port of Mombasa.
The two parties resolved to continue using the Kenya Revenue Authority Evaluation formula, which mostly relies on declaration and documents presented by importers.
This is opposed to a new system it had introduced last month which led to protests by clearing agents.
In a joint public notice yesterday, the taxman and the Kenya International Freight and Warehousing Association said they will cooperate to enhance efficiency in cargo clearance at Kenyan borders.
“This will be achieved through streamlining of KRA valuation dispute resolution mechanisms, and the strengthening of customs agents licensing processes,” the notice signed by KRA commissioner general customs and border control Julius Musyoki and Kifwa national chairman Auni Bhaiji stated.
“During a meeting held at Times Tower on November 10, senior officials of KRA and Kifwa agreed to coordinate actions relating to valuation dispute resolution and the vetting of customs agents licence renewals, with a view to professionalising the industry,” it added.
The two also agreed to tackle cargo mis-declaration, which occurs through concealment and undervaluation.
Musyoki had earlier indicated that the authority reviewed its cargo valuation to curb tax cheats.
“Importers have manipulated KRA systems which has led to an increase in undervaluation, mis-declaration and concealment of imported goods, including falsification of importation documents,” Musyoki told journalists in Nairobi on November 7.
The new system involved the use of transaction value, valuation using identical goods, and transaction val- ue of similar goods, which Kifwa said increased taxes.
The move led to a go-slow by about 1,500 clearing agents affiliated to Kifwa, who stopped lodging documents since October 31, leaving more than 1,000 containers at the Port of Mombasa.
“In this regard, Kifwa supports ongoing KRA actions aimed at levelling the playing field through enhanced vigilance on values declared to customs as mandated under section 122, and the Fourth Schedule to the East African Community Customs Management Act,” yesterday’s statement read.
Kifwa national vice chairman Eric Gitonga said clearing agents have resumed operations.
Uncleared containers at the Port of Mombasa