The country is on the right track in the implementation of the Maritime Single Window System with the development of the software taking its final lap.
Mr. Amos Wang’ora, chief executive officer of the Kenya Trade Network Agency (KenTrade), the implementing agency, told the Freight Logistics magazine that the completion of the development of the software is expected in December with the software going live in March next year.
The system is a mandatory requirement for national governments to introduce electronic information exchange between ships and ports, which came into effect from 8 April 2019. This is aimed at making cross-border trade simpler and the logistics chain more efficient, for the more than 10 billion tons of goods which are traded by sea annual
The requirement, under International Maritime Convention’s (IMO’s) Convention on Facilitation of International Maritime Traffic (FAL Convention), is part of a package of amendments under the revised Annex to the FAL Convention, adopted in 2016.
“The new FAL Convention requirement for all Public Authorities to establish systems for the electronic exchange of information related to maritime transport marks a significant move in the maritime industry and ports towards a digital maritime world, reducing the administrative burden and increasing the efficiency of maritime trade and transport,” said IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim in an earlier statement.
KenTrade signed a partnership agreement with TradeMark East Africa (TMEA) for the enhancement of Kenya’s Single Window System to improve on its performance and eventually enable faster and efficient trade processes.
Ahmed Farah, country director for TMEA Kenya, an organization formed to help regional states speed up integration in an earlier interview said the TMEA is committed to growing prosperity through trade in the Eastern Africa region.
“We recognize the impact of the single window on the trade value chain. That is why we are committing to support the enhancement of the single window system in order to increase its capacity as an effective trade facilitation tool,” Farah added.
TMEA is also supporting KenTrade in building capacity in data processing and reporting as part of this initiative through acquisition of a business intelligence tool and its integration to the Single Window System.
Farah said that the partnership between TMEA and KenTrade has been on-going for a number of years and previously TMEA had supported KenTrade in designing a business model and tariff regime to ensure the sustainability of the Single Window System services.
TMEA has also partnered with KenTrade in building the capacity of a number of partner government agencies and integration of their systems with the Single Window System.
The main objective of the IMO’s Convention on Facilitation of International Maritime Traffic (FAL Convention), adopted in 1965, is to achieve the most efficient maritime transport as possible, looking for smooth transit in ports of ships, cargo and passengers.
The FAL Convention, which has 121 Contracting Governments, contains standards and recommended practices and rules for simplifying formalities, documentary requirements and procedures on ships’ arrival, stay and departure.
Under the FAL Committee, IMO has developed standardised FAL documentation for authorities and Governments to use, and the FAL Convention urges all stakeholders to make use of them.
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