By Fredrick Obura
The Federation of East Africa Freight forwarders association (FEAFA) has received Sh42.2 million ($495, 980) grant from Trade Mark to improve import logistics challenges identified to be a trade barrier within East Africa region.
The grant will help train about 4,000 personnel by the end of next year. “Logistics costs account for about 42 per cent of total cost of importing, while the costs associated with delays represent about 23 per cent of the total import process cost, this is a challenge to businesses, which needs to be addressed,” said TradeMark East Africa Trade facilitation Silas Kanamugire. “Through the project, we are targeting to build a pool of qualified human resource capable of handling these challenges,” he said.
Last year, TradeMark handed $1 million grant to the federation in improving capacity of freighters within the region. In collaboration with the Eastern Revenue Authorities, the federation has developed a training programme for customs agents and freight forwarders.
The programe is expected to contribute in reducing delays of cargo clearance, which is consistent with the region’s objective to reduce transport and related cost along the corridors.
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“We are excited about this partnership which is expected to develop strategies that will reduce the time and cost of transport in East Africa,” said Mathew Bizimana, President Federation of East Africa Freight forwarders association.
He called for more collaboration on key areas such as the EAC’s single custom territory to fast track the whole integration process.