Active complaints

Showing items 1 to 20 of 62
Complaint number NTB Type
Category 1. Government participation in trade & restrictive practices tolerated by governments
Category 2. Customs and administrative entry procedures
Category 5. Specific limitations
Category 6. Charges on imports
Category 7. Other procedural problems
Category 8. Transport, Clearing and Forwarding
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NTB-001-010 2.6. Additional taxes and other charges 2020-03-20 Uganda: Busia Kenya New View
Complaint: INIQUITOUS TAX AND RESTRICTION OF TRADE
In order to export poultry products to Uganda, a Kenyan farmer/producer is charged 18% VAT, 6% withholding tax and 1% road levy. This is 25% cumulative tax payable to Uganda Revenue Authority (URA). It is important to note that in Uganda chicken is not vatable, yet they charge VAT on chicken from Kenya.
 
Products: 0207.13: Fresh or chilled cuts and edible offal of fowls of the species Gallus domesticus  
NTB-001-009 7.2. Discrimination 2021-03-01 Kenya: Customs Uganda New View
Complaint: Kenya excise Duty Act 2015 imposes a duty of 35% on the LPG cylinders from Uganda not imposed on Similar cylinders manufactured in Kenya.  
NTB-001-008 2.2. Arbitrary customs classification 2020-05-05 Zambia: Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries SADC New View
Complaint: Nestle is facing Product classification challenges in the Zambian market involving imitation products that are not dairy who are classified as dairy and face similar penalties that dairy products face. This product in question is Cremora which is classified by the authorities as a dairy product. However, CREMORA is a non-dairy creamer. To this effect, the request is to consider CREMORA for exemption from the dairy category of definition and profile of the product.  
NTB-001-007 2.6. Additional taxes and other charges 2021-02-25 Zambia: Livingstone SADC New View
Complaint: A member of the South African Brand owners Association is experiencing push back from Zambia’s Ministry of Health in that they do not want to issue the Zambian importers a Health Clearance certificate unless the product has been subjected to re-testing in Zambia.
The association presented the Certificate of Analysis issued by South African Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development which is responsible for analysis of products in South Africa, which was rejected by Zambia authorities.
The importers ended up going to meet the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Health to plead their case for clearance of which the Ministry said that they could not advise on which specific metals to test and advised that for future reference and to avoid this occurring again, the importers may use the former certificates to identify the metals that are present to enable the lab to test accurately. The example attached by the Ministry was for the inclusion of the following tests:
Natamycin
Sorbic Acid
Zinc – ZN
Copper – CU
Iron – FE
Lead – PB
For years the South African Health Clearance Certificate was accepted. The duplication of test conducted results in the below additional costs for our importer:
R240 per wine selected. We export 202 skus. If we have to test all of them at least once a year then we will spend R48 480 annually to confirm that our products are in spect.
Following the meeting with Ministry of Health , the Zambian importers reported that some past COA’s have successfully now managed to gain clearance for 2021 Q1 and Q2. We would appreciate if this matter can be resolved.
 
NTB-001-006 2.2. Arbitrary customs classification 2021-01-28 Zimbabwe: Chirundu Zimbabwe New View
Complaint: AGENTS charged as a criminal offense and penalised for not attaching Permit.

Due to COVID 19 Restrictions in place for Zimbabwe small scale cross border traders their goods are now spending more days at border posts due to the long processing requirements' which they never new when they enjoyed using COMESA STR which was suspended because of COVID as they are not allowed to clear there goods at the borders . Trade is only allowed to be done through the clearing of agents, Those few traders who are using the agents are facing numerous challenges which include requirements for permits and licenses for STR qualifying goods which are beyond the reach of many thereby marginalizing the rest of the traders .

On 28 January 2021 an entry for sweets and sherbets was done by the agent at Chirundu . The Agent erroneously omitted to attach permit for bio safety and the agent was fined an astronomical figure of 400,000 RTGs and when he appealed for that decision of the amount it was doubled to 800,000 RTGS which translate to above US$8000 on the day's exchange rate. ZIMRA classified omission to attach a biosafety permit as a criminal offense attracting a fine outlined in SI 25 of 2021 the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) (Standard Scale of Fines) Notice, 2021.This notice is issued by the Minister in terms of section 280 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act [Chapter 9:23]. On reading the Act, it is not clear if omission to attach a document constitute a criminal offense .

The goods now have 12 working days at the border and the consignment was for a small-scale trader who is not a company, and these are the people who live on hand to mouth trade. The level of fines for clearing agents are Punitive rather than Correctional, Agents are now afraid of clearing goods for small scale traders as they are heavily fined for omissions and errors which are a common thing in the world, Permits are cumbersome to obtain for some of them.

1. ZIMRA is urged to reconsider the classification of error from “Criminal Offense” to “Omission to attach a required document” and therefore the reduce level of fine
2. The relevant Government Department is requested to consider allowing clearance of COMESA STR goods by TIDOs during this COVID period when they get to the border under modalities to be agreed upon by the authorities.
 
NTB-001-005 2.2. Arbitrary customs classification 2021-01-05 Zimbabwe: Chirundu Zimbabwe New View
Complaint: CROSS BORDER TRADE RELATED
Cross border trade was affected by the lockdown put in place under the COMESA COVID-19 Regulations implemented by Member States because of challenges the pandemic brought. While the COVID-19 Measures are welcome, the lockdown did not have other mechanisms which were put in place to cover the informal sector as majority of them are women who are also bread winners whose small savings and profits are meant for schools and general welfare of the family. As much as traders pay heed to COVID 19 regulations this does not substitute food on the table. Government appreciated movement of goods by trucks as a way of decongesting borders thereby small scale traders being marginalized.

COMESA SIMPLIFIED REGIME is a system done by COMESA Members States to simply trade for small trade players, in this Pandemic lockdown , why don't the Government allow small scale traders to organize themselves through CBTAs and COMESA TRADE INFORMATION OFFICERS to clear their wares in a simplified manner. Traders can send their money by wire transfer or MUKURU then goods are sent to the border and all the clearing formalities are done by the TIDO, the same way clearing agents are doing it. The current arrangement where only agents allowed to do clearances for cross border traders has increased their cost of doing business drastically as the the clearing formalities takes more time 3-4 working days from time when an entry is done where as the STR clearance through TIDO takes hours for a small consignment of $1000.00 STR threshold value and goods are released, goods which are on of eligible products
 
Products: 2202: Waters, including mineral waters and aerated waters, containing added sugar or other sweetening matter or flavoured, and other non-alcoholic beverages, not including fruit or vegetable juices of heading 20.09., 3401: Soap; organic surface-active products and preparations for use as soap, in the form of bars, cakes, moulded pieces or shapes, whether or not containing soap; organic surface-active products and preparations for washing the skin, in the form of liquid or c and 3005: Wadding, gauze, bandages and similar articles (for example, dressings, adhesive plasters, poultices), impregnated or coated with pharmaceutical substances or put up in forms or packings for retail sale for medical, surgical, dental or veterinary purposes  
NTB-001-004 2.8. Lengthy and costly customs clearance procedures 2020-12-31 Zambia: Kariba Zimbabwe New View
Complaint: Introduction of Statutory Instrument 115 of 2020, Ports of Entry and Routes Amendment Order, page 785 of S.I. 115 -2020 Indicates borders and regulating hours of operation, Kariba and Victoria Falls being affected. For goods destined for Kariba, it will be very difficult and costly for traders to go via chirundu and back to Kariba . The chuiiurundu kariba route doubles the distance and therefire craetes additional cost for landing same product in Kariba. Distance to transport goods directly from Siavonga Juction to Kariba border is 78 kms . Whereas ,the Chirundu routes is: Siyavonga to the border chirundu (20kms); Add 62 kms from chirundu border to Makuti then 77 kms from Makuti to Kariba, totalling 159kms.
This Order disturbs the spirit of Regional integration , traders are crying because of COVID 19 and its effects then another 115 Pandemic, . If all exports are centralized to pass through chirundu it means we are putting pressure at one point this in turn increases chances of smuggling and paying bribes, as of more days are spent at the border. This will give pressure to clearing agents who will make errors in making entries leading to pay heavy fines, the agent will simply abandon the goods leading to the bond being cancelled , this will cause traders to have other options of smuggling and paying bribes, WHY DONT THERE BE CORRECTIVE MEASURES THAN PUNITIVE MEASURES.

This S.I. has come at a point where Zimbabwean traders are not allowed to clear goods over the counter because of COVID 19 and other regulations
 
Products: 1905: Bread, pastry, cakes, biscuits and other bakers' wares, whether or not containing cocoa; communion wafers, empty cachets of a kind suitable for pharmaceutical use, sealing wafers, rice paper and similar products., 3401: Soap; organic surface-active products and preparations for use as soap, in the form of bars, cakes, moulded pieces or shapes, whether or not containing soap; organic surface-active products and preparations for washing the skin, in the form of liquid or c and 3401: Soap; organic surface-active products and preparations for use as soap, in the form of bars, cakes, moulded pieces or shapes, whether or not containing soap; organic surface-active products and preparations for washing the skin, in the form of liquid or c  
NTB-001-003 8.1. Government Policy and regulations 2021-01-26 Zambia: Zambia Revenue Authority COMESA New View
Complaint: Government of Zambia issues Statutory Instrument 115 of 2020 , The Customs and Excise Ports of Entry and Routes Amendment Order, 2020, 9A(1) Reads , goods exported through Victoria Falls port in accordance with this paragraph shall be transported by rail, this Order automatically is a ban to export goods to Zimbabwe as the whole process to export using rail is a burdensome to trade by small scale players. Most goods are bought in Kamwala area shops and some being bought in the industrial areas which small players can easily transport using their vehicles or hired vehicles as they combine wares. Introduction for use of Rail is a clear indication by the Government of Zambia to ban export of certain commodities to Zimbabwe as market access will be a challenge to those living within Victoria Falls and the whole part of matebelalend as they are forced to use Chirundu exit .
Trucks can reach Victoria Falls within a day which is different from train, trucks you can accompany your goods different from train, trucks you can be cleared in time whereas using train everything is dumped at one place. this will open other avenues of bush borders or direct smuggling at the borders as officials will not be clearing goods in trucks
 
Products: 34: CHAPTER 34 - SOAP, ORGANIC SURFACE-ACTIVE AGENTS, WASHING PREPARATIONS, LUBRICATING PREPARATIONS, ARTIFICIAL WAXES, PREPARED WAXES, POLISHING OR SCOURING PREPARATIONS, CANDLES AND SIMILAR ARTICLES, MODELLING PASTES, ‘DENTAL WAXES’ AND DENTAL PREPARATIONS , 1905: Bread, pastry, cakes, biscuits and other bakers' wares, whether or not containing cocoa; communion wafers, empty cachets of a kind suitable for pharmaceutical use, sealing wafers, rice paper and similar products. and 0401: Milk and cream, not concentrated nor containing added sugar or other sweetening matter.  
NTB-001-001 1.14. Lack of coordination between government institutions 2021-01-19 Namibia: NRST Head Office / Innovation Hub Cnr, Louis Raymond & Grant Webster Street Private Bag 13253 Windhoek Tel: +264 61 431 7000/99 Fax: + 264 61 216 531/+ 264 61 235 758 Email: info@ncrst.na South Africa New View
Complaint: 1. GMO thresholds - Namibia is 1% and South Africa is 5%

2. The above then has implications on what should be labeled.

3. The prescribed GMO wording is also different

4. Namibia also requests additional information from the rights owner (GMO Tech developers), which users do not have in South Africa.

All of this adds up to South African manufacturers/exporters being unable to meet the application requirements, thereby not obtaining the required import permits.

CGCSA members revised applications 3 times, but were still unable to complete the applications to the specifications expected.
 
NTB-000-998 2.3. Issues related to the rules of origin 2020-12-01 Uganda: Busia Kenya In process View
Complaint: Uganda denial of Market access on Fay Aluminium Foil and Fay Cling they have instead charged full CET to Kimfay Kenya manufactured products.
KRA conducted a verification visit to Kimfay premises as required under the EAC ROO 2015 to ascertain origin and certified in 2016. Since then the company has been exporting under EAC preferential Treatemnt until December 2020 where URA charged full CET and also charged infrastructure levy and excise duty despite the two products meeting the criteria for EAC rules of Origin 2015.

New imposed levies Fay Cling Film film Fay Aluminium Foil
Excise duty 10% 0
Infrastructure levy 1.50% 1.50%
Import duty 0 25%
Existing tax
VAT 18% 18
 
Progress: On 18 March 2021, Burundi Focal Point advised that aluminum foil specified as item 3 did not meet the origin criteria as provided under rule 6 of the EAC(Rules of Origin) Rule 2015. the Rule provides for either a change in Tariff Heading or Material Content Criteria hence the query. However all the other items on the Entry C38500 of 01/12/2020 were accorded preferential treatment.  
Products: 7607.20.90: -- Other  
NTB-000-997 1.7. Discriminatory or flawed government procurement policies
Policy/Regulatory
2018-07-01 Uganda: Uganda VAT Kenya In process View
Complaint: Uganda charges Kenya manufactured excise books VAT at 18%. The VAT is not levied on Uganda locally manufactured books. The discriminative VAT is in violation of Article III of GATT 1994, Article 75(6) of the Treaty establishing the EAC and Article 15 of the EAC Custom Union Protocol as it subjects Kenyan manufactured products to VAT charges not charged on same domestic products in Uganda.  
Progress: 1. On 14 December 2020, the Focal Point , EAC Secretariat gave observations that most VAT Acts of Partner States provide for Exempt and Zero Rated Supplies under their specific schedules. VAT on locally manufactured items is normally paid at the point of sale while for imported ones is at the time of importation.Uganda Focal Point is therefore requested to assist to establish application of VAT on exercise books.
2.The NMC meeting that took place in March, 2021 noted the VAT is charged on a discriminatory basis and should be eliminated. Ministry of Trade to liaise with the Ministry of Finance and report during the RMC.
3. Uganda Focal Point reported that there is no evidence attached for this NTB however, the Value Added Tax (Zero rated Educational Materials) Regulations, 2018 Statutory Instrument No 22 of 2018 provides for what is considered as educational material and includes Exercise books as one them and this is at 0%.
4. On 13 April 2021, Kenya Focal Point reported that there is still denial of exemption and delays in processing of the exemptions as well. This zero rate educational materials-exercise books is not automatic in the system as clients need to apply.
 
NTB-000-992 Inconsistent application of COVID-19 test requirement 2020-12-01 Zimbabwe: Chirundu Zambia New View
Complaint: Zimbabwe is not consistent with the SADC COVID-19 requirement/guidelines of drivers requiring a 14 days validity test as a 48 hours requirement has been imposed. This has resulted in increase in cost of doing business as drivers have to take multiple COVID-19 tests which cost on average $76 per test. Transporters travelling into Zambia on the other hand can use their COVI-19 certificates within a 14 day period. A transporter delivering/transiting in Zimbabwe is required to take at least 2 COVID tests within the 14 day period. In some cases this has caused congestion at the border as truckers rush to beat the 48 hour COVID-19 test validity.  
NTB-000-987 8.7. Costly Road user charges /fees 2020-09-26 Zambia: Kazungula Ferry Botswana New View
Complaint: Zambia Road Transport and Safety Agency (RTSA)charges Botswana trucks 541 US Dollars per each entry into Zambia, while other SADC Countries are charged per distance. South Africa trucks are charged 110 US Dollars from Kazungula Ferry to Lusaka, Namibia trucks are charged a fixed 209 US Dollars per truck anywhere into Zambia. Zimbabwe and Tanzania pay a the same as South Africa.

Botswana trucks again have to pay RTSA K469 for identity cards per unit which becomes costly for Botswana truckers while other SADC Countries do not pay for identity cards. As Esmail Carriers (PTY) LTD we have 12 trucks that are crossing into Zambia and this has been going on for over 8 years. Per trip we spend more than P6765 per truck and per month the cumulative costs amount to more than P80 000.00 (RTSA charges). For identity cards is about P12 600.00 per month. Furthermore, Zambia has introduced new inland road tolls which we are paying in addition to existing charges.

This has become detrimental to our business as we lose more revenue on a daily basis. We currently request the Zambia government, Botswana government and SADC Secretariat to resolve this issue.
 
Progress: On 8th December 2020, Zambia Focal point reported that they were making follow up with the Road Transport and Safety Agency ( RTSA) and provide feedback as soon as possible.  
NTB-000-985 1.8. Import bans 2020-10-12 South Africa: Grobler's Bridge Zambia New View
Complaint: Certified organic honey that is American Foulbrood Disease (AFB)free, complete with Certificate of Analysis from accredited lab Intertek in Germany (accredited by the German National Accreditation body DAkkS - national accreditation body for the Federal Republic of Germany) they are also ISO/IEC 17025 certified and they do engage in proficiency testing) has been banned from entering SA unless irradiated.
2015 bilateral agreement allowed Zambian honey into SA without irradiating due to there being no AFB in Zambia.
SA claims that their ARC lab has tested samples from Forest Fruits and others and found them to be positive for AFB. The ARC lab has always produced inconsistent results and they cannot replicate the results. Sometimes positive and after a retest it is negative. ARC lab is not even SANAS accredited, has no ISO certification and does not engage in proficiency testing for AFB tests. On 23 October 2020 at a round table meeting of SA honey importers and various DAFF departments - meeting called by DAFF NPPO, it was clearly stated and admitted that ARC has performance "gaps".
DAFF scientists have to make decisions based on faulty science and results. The Intertek results consistently come back as negative for AFB disease. The result is in Non Compliance notices being sent to Zambia for samples that get retested and are negative!
As recent as last year, Zambia Veterinary Services did a national survey and found no AFB disease in Zambia.
SA DAFF NPPO is creating haphazard barriers to Zambian honey.
All Zambian exports are now affected.
Since 2015 a considerable amount of business with South African companies has developed in Zambia exporting honey to them. This ban affects the livelihoods of over 140,000 subsistence villagers.
 
NTB-000-982 1.4. Preference given to domestic bidders/suppliers 2020-08-24 Botswana: Ministry of Trade and Industry Zimbabwe In process View
Complaint: On 24 August 2020, Botswana’s Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry released a statement that the country would be restricting the importation of baked goods. This will affect products such as pastries, cookies, muffins and other products derived from some form of grain.
The statement was supported by S.I 102 of 2020. The Botswana’s Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry highlighted that the move is meant to protect the domestic producers.
 
NTB-000-976 8.8. Issues related to transit 2020-08-10 Botswana: Kazungula Ferry Zambia New View
Complaint: We have a fleet of trucks and the problem is there is no fixed procedure to calculate the toll that BURS charges. They see the weights on the trailers mentioned on the blue plates which many a times shows 36,000kgs on the small trailer and 36,000 on the big trailer. That means they charge each truck toll for 72000 kgs. Some trailers with the same load and same trailers end up paying 4200Pulas and some trailers with the same cargo and same type of trailers are told to pay 6700 pulas. When the agent goes to ask that if you are charging us for 72000kgs will you allow the truck to carry such weights. They just tell him to leave the office and say there is no negotiation. We fail to understand how 1 truck having the same trailer and same cargo pay 4300 pulas and other truck with same trailer and same cargo is told to pay 6700 pulas. This on our transporters part is unfair. They should come with a fixed charge option that trucks with tri axel trailers will pay this much and trucks with interlinks trailers will pay this much. Please we will be obliged if this issue is raised on top priority.  
NTB-000-975 1.8. Import bans 2020-07-02 Kenya: Ministry of Agriculture,Livestock,fisheries and cooperatives Uganda In process View
Complaint: Kenya banned importation of sugar ,brown sugar and raw cane from Uganda  
Progress: 1. The RMC meeting held on 1 September 2020, was informed that Kenya is working to resolve the issue not later than 22nd September, 2020. The Republic of Uganda informed the meeting that verification was done several times on these products and have trucks stuck at the border. And hence called for immediate resolution of this NTB.
2.Kenya informed the meeting the Sugar Board issues permits. Uganda informed the meeting that the Kenya sugar board is still not issuing permits for the importation of brown sugar from Uganda on the grounds that they have not yet been mandated to issue permits. Kenya advised that Uganda puts the above complaint in writing for their consideration.
3.During the NMC meeting that took place in March 2021, the meeting was informed that two bilateral meetings were held with Kenya to discuss among others the NTB on the importation of brown sugar, The Trade Ministers from both sides met and Kenya agreed that the issue will be resolved. Kenya agreed to undertake a verification mission to Uganda. The Mission has not yet taken place but there has been a commendable improvement in the area, where sugar has been allowed into Kenya. The issue on raw cane was RESOLVED
 
NTB-000-974 7.2. Discrimination
Policy/Regulatory
2020-05-02 Kenya: Tanzania In process View
Complaint: Kenya recently enacted the Business Law (Amendment) Act, 2020 which amended the Excise Duty Act, 2015 (the Excise Duty Act) by imposing excise duty on imported glass bottles (excluding glass bottles for packaging pharmaceutical products) at a rate of 25%, with effect from 18 March 2020. This amendment will result in an increase in the cost of imported glass bottles as compared to glass bottles which are locally manufactured in Kenya.  
Progress: 1.During the RMC meeting held on 1 September 2020, the Republic of Kenya informed the meeting that they will consult and report back.Tanzania informed the meeting that this NTB was reported in the system and Tanzania request interim measures. Tanzania traders should be allowed to transfer KIOO to Kenya pending the finalisation of Consultations
2.During the Sectoral Committee on Trade, Kenya reported that the company has sued the Government of Kenya and there is a pending Court (EACJ) case on the NTB reported by KIOO Tanzania and urged that this NTB should not be deliberated on but rather wait for court judgment.The Sectoral Committee on Trade noted that the matter is in Court and the United Republic of Tanzania and the Republic of Kenya will be officially notified on the same.
3.The United Republic of Tanzania informed the SCTIFI meeting held in September 2020, that the Republic of Kenya has contravened the EAC CMP and the EAC CUP and hence increased the cost of doing business. The NTB should be dealt with separately from the Court Case and the Republic of Kenya should respond to the letters and also implement the SCTIFI Directive.During the SCTIFI the Republic of Kenya informed that the issue is in Court and Kenya will respond once the Court Case has been concluded.
4. The Kenya NMC meeting during their NMC of March 2021; was of the view that the two Partner States can engage bilaterally to address the matter without necessarily continuing with Court proceedings. The meeting, therefore, recommended that the United Republic of Tanzania initiates the process to settle the KIOO NTB with the Republic of Kenya, out of Court.
5. During the Tanzania NMC meeting held in April 2021, the meeting was informed that the EACJ had issued an Injunction Order in November 2020 (attached) where an Interim Order was granted. Since then the Republic of Kenya has not honored the Court injunction Order. 1. The Republic of Kenya should honor the Court Order; 2. The out-of-court request by Kenya should be preceded by the goodwill of implementing the Court Injunction Order then other negotiations can follow; and 3. The EAC Secretariat was requested to write and submit the Order officially to Kenya.
 
NTB-000-973 We are asked to pay 500mts to gain entry and exit to and from Mozambique (250 in/250 out) under the guise that the trucks need to be inspected. 2020-08-04 Mozambique: Delegação Aduaneira de Namaacha Eswatini In process View
Complaint: Eswatini Company is asked to pay 500mts to gain entry and exit to and from Mozambique (250 in/250 out) under the guise that the trucks need to be inspected in line with Ministerial Diploma NO 18/2007 of February 9, which approves the table of various fees for Border Posts, effective from August 2, 2020. However inspection cargo is not done and therefore we are made to pay for services not rendered. Further , the drivers have t pay to get their passport stamped.
How do we dertermine the time the vehicles stays at the border if we are billed a hourly charge all documentation and taxes dues are paid in advance to try and speed the process up why does the driver need to pay to have his passport stamped on arrival and more strangely on exiting with an empty vehicle.
 
Products: 3214.10: Glaziers' putty, grafting putty, resin cements, caulking compounds and other mastics; painters' fillings  
NTB-000-972 7.5. Lengthy procedures 2020-07-24 Zimbabwe: Beitbridge In process View
Complaint: There is usually a very long queue of north-bound trucks on the South African side of the border. This situation is very undesirable at it negatively affects trade facilitation along the north-south corridor and is a big concern in efforts to fight the covid-19 pandemic. These trucks are held up at the border due to some of the following reasons:

1) The Zimbabwe Revenue Authority Document Processing Centres (DPCs) are opening at 0800hrs and closing at 1500hrs. Outside this period trucks are still moving and documents are continuously lodged into the system by clearing agents. Processes that should be done in the Zimra system cannot be performed during this period. The border post is open for 24 hours and closure of the DPCs creates a bottleneck. Operating hours of the DPCs have been affected by the national curfew (0600hrs-1800hrs) that was recently introduced by Government to fight against the covid-19 pandemic.

2) Other customs processes such as cargo release (manual) procedures and query resolution are taking too much time to be done.

3) Due to the recent upward movement in the exchange rate, clearing agents sometimes do not have enough bond cover to move goods in transit. This has also resulted in truck movement delays. A proposal to have these bonds denominated in USD (in order to introduce stability in the system) has been made by the association to Zimra.

4) There are delays by Zimra in generating T1s which allow movement of transit cargo even in cases where bonds sufficiently cover the goods.

5) Of late Zimra did very well by opening a fast lane (green route) for some traffic but there has been no consistency in this process. The route is closed at times.

6) There are undesignated check-points within the border which humper movement of trucks.
 
Progress: On 29th July 2020 , ZIMRA provided the following explanations to clear the complaint:
a) The delays are experienced where there is insufficient surety to enable generation of T1s however, monitoring in undertaken to ensure T1s are generated on time for sufficiently funded bonds. Where sufficient surety are provided, ZIMRA promised that effective supervision and monitoring will be implemented to remove delays in the generation of T1s
b) The bus lanes incorporating the green route and red route are still operational and grains trucks, low risk cargo and transit cargo not destined to Condep are using the route all the time. Consistency in the operation of the green lane is totally guaranteed considering the benefits being delivered from its use.
c) The issue of checkpoints by other Government agencies has been dealt with by the Ease of doing business task force, however In the interim as the lead agent, ZIMRA will escalate the challenges to the responsible authorities of the respective other agencies making reference to the Ease of doing business resolutions and will monitor to ensure checkpoints as agreed in the Ease of doing business meetings are adhered to. The ZIMRA checkpoints in the yard are well defined and there is need to engage the responsible relevant stakeholders operating any undesignated checkpoint.
d) The Zimbabwe Revenue Authority Document Processing Centres (DPCs) are opening at 0800hrs and closing at 1500hrs. Outside this period trucks are still moving and documents are continuously lodged into the system by clearing agents. Processes that should be done in the ZIMRA system cannot be performed during this period..
e) The operational hours for the Declaration Processing Centres were affected by the recent National Lockdown pronouncement and efforts are underway to engage the responsible Authority for exemption of DPC offices. To mitigate the challenge, Beitbridge seconded officers from other Sections to assist in examining and assessing of bills of entry.
f) Skeletal staff members are manning the Sections in an effort to observe social distancing during the COVID 19 pandemic and efforts are underway to speed up queries resolution a process that also require reciprocal support from Clearing Agents. Constant monitoring of trucks movement is done to ensure speed release of trucks.
g) The proposal was done at National level and it is still under consideration, the Clearing Agent in the interim are implored to uplift their bonds which will be urgently approved in the interest of trade facilitation.
 
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