Importers and exporters have been handed a lifeline after Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) announced an extension of free storage period for cargo containers.
The move is aimed at cushioning the cargo owners against high charges levied as their consignment is stored awaiting clearance.
KPA said the measures will offer a reprieve to customers who have faced a hard time as the Covid-19 has impacted the whole travel logistics chain, leading to delays in the transportation of cargo that has docked, or that is ready to take off.
In the new arrangement, domestic export containers will be allowed a 15-day free storage period, up from nine days.
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Transit import containers at port and Inland Container Depot (ICD) Embakasi will have 14 days, also previously fixed at nine days.
Transit import cargo at ICD Naivasha will now have a 30-day free storage period. Before the new initiative, they did not have a free storage allowance.
Transit export containers can now sit for free for 20 days, five days more than the 15 that was allowed before.
Even as stringent regulations have been slapped on the transport industry to check movement of people, President Uhuru Kenyatta has allowed the continued movement of cargo in and out of Kenya.
Movement of people has been restricted into and out of Nairobi, Mombasa, Kilifi, Kwale and Mandera counties as the government tries to contain the spread of the pandemic.
However, goods are still allowed to move across the boundaries.
KPA, whose operating revenue was Sh42.7 billion in 2017/18, handled over 1.2 million twenty-foot equivalent unit containers that year, with 582,331 for imports and 535,865 for exports.