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Kenya: Shippers Owe Port Performance to New CharterThursday, December 11, 2014 > 09:05:41
THE Shippers Council of Eastern Africa has attributed improved port performance at the Kilindini harbour, to the newly signed Mombasa Port Community Charter.
SCEA Chairman Gilbert Langat, who is also the Mombasa Port Charter Oversight Committee chairman, said commitment by agencies who signed the charter has seen the ongoing reforms and improved performance at the port.
Speaking to the Star on phone yesterday, Langat said the charter has brought better coordination among agencies and the port community.
"It has made it possible to monitor port performance and quickly intervene whenever there is a problem. We are now able to track where there is a drop in performance," said Langat.
He said the implementation of the Kenya Trade Net System by KenTrade has also plaid a critical role in cross border trade.
According to the shippers, implementation of the System that integrates online cargo clearance has helped speed up cargo movement.
This comes after KPA announced a 9.3 per cent growth on cargo through put.
Langat who also presided over the Kenya Trade Net System stakeholders' consultative forum which ended on Friday in Naivasha, said agencies must remain committed to the charter to improve trade in the region.
"The Port of Mombasa Charter that was launched by President Uhuru Kenyatta on June 30, 2014, spells out specific targets and delivery time lines for each Port Community member under the Port Reforms initiatives. Everyone has to play his role," said Langat.
Among areas he said have so far been achieved includes reduced transit time from the port of Mombasa to the hinterland, which has dropped from an average 8 days to 4 days.
Under the Port Charter, each agency pledged on specific action within six months effective June 2014, as contribution to the Port reform, which is part of the regional Heads of State stated agenda.
Langat said SCEA is keen on partnering with KenTrade to promote adoption of the Single Window System in the region.
During Last week's Naivasha forum, KenTrade CEO Alex Kabuga said the Kenya Trade Net System was a complex and cross cutting project, that needs involvement of all the Port based agencies that signed the charter.
He said the success of Kenya Trade Net System will have tremendous impact on the Kenya as proven by economies that have successfully implemented the System.
"Revenue generation went up by over 30 per cent in economies where Single Window has been successfully implemented and this is the direction that the Government is keen on taking this nation with Kenya Trade Net System," said Kabuga said.
Transport Cabinet Secretary Michael Kamau has since warned that the government is closely monitoring the charter, to ensure every agency plays its role in boosting port performance and trade in the Northern Corridor.