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Taxman to dump Simba system for latest automation

By Frankline Sunday | January 7th 2014

By Frankline Sunday

Kenya: Overhauling Kenya’s customs clearance system has inched closer to actualisation. The Government has floated the tender for a consultancy firm to steer the process.

Through trade logistics company TradeMark East Africa, the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) Monday kicked off the process that will see the current customs clearance system Simba, overhauled.

“KRA wishes to replace its existing customs system, the Simba system, with a comprehensive integrated customs management system (iCMS),” read a media statement calling for bids Monday.

 “The new system will enhance automation of customs and revenue collection procedures whilst facilitating international trade across Kenyan borders.” “On behalf of KRA, TradeMark East Africa seeks to contract a consultancy firm to provide this solution.”

The move is the latest in an effort to update the automation systems at the port of Mombasa in order to improve clearance procedures. KRA’s Simba system went live in 2005 as part of the modernisation plans on the revenue authority.

Since then, increased economic activity in East Africa’s busiest port owing to the growth in the regional economy has seen the capacity of the system stretched thin necessitating an upgrade.

The issue was further made urgent by frequent downtimes on the network, which stalled crucial processes that affected importers and exporters leading to millions of shillings in losses.

The new iCMS, which is being installed at a budget of Sh1.1 billion, is expected to be completed by the third quarter of next year.

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