Active complaints

Showing items 61 to 80 of 87
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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Date of incident Location
Reporting country or region (additional)
NTB-001-105 7.8. Consular and Immigration Issues
2023-03-01 Zambia: Ministry of Home Affairs Mozambique Complaint registered with REC View
Complaint: New Migration Fees Introduced by The Republic of Zambia
The Ministry of Industry and Commerce of Mozambique, has received a complaint/ notification from the Mozambican private sector regarding to the introduction of migration fees by the Zambian Government Authorities. The referred fees are applicable only to foreign citizens, promptly implementing the respective price list, since the beginning of June 2022.
From a practical point of view, and with regard to the resulting costs, for road freight transporters in particular, the introduction of these fees means that, for the fee valid for 1 year, the amount to be paid is approximately US$1250.For one way trip (immediate validity), the amount to be paid is approximately US$490.This fee apply only to foreign road freight transporters, including Mozambicans, and does not apply to locals.
Other measures which Zambia introduced and are adding to cost of doing business are (1). the introduction of a ban on filling fuel reserve tanks for foreign trucks, with a view to obliging them to purchase fuel in Zambian territory, (2). the introduction of road charges and, (3). the obligation to send 50% of the transported cargo to the Republic of Zambia.
We believe that the way which the Government of Republic of Zambia acts violates the Agreements signed by it in relation to the policies adopted by SADC, in the field of road transport, for which the Member States agreed to develop a harmonized transport policy that safeguards the principles of equal treatment, non-discrimination, reciprocity, fair competition, harmonized operating conditions that promote the creation of an integrated road transport system in the region.
In this regard, Mozambique requests the intervention of the Zambian Authorities, with a view to the immediate elimination of the Migration fees, introduced in this country, as well as other deterrents to carrying out the cargo transport activity in the Country, and applicable only to carriers foreigners or alternatively, and if the country is not available to do so, immediately use the principle of reciprocity, by applying the same measures to carriers in that country, if they are in transit or enter the national territory
NTB-001-157 2.3. Issues related to the rules of origin 2023-03-15 Rwanda: Rusumo In process View
Complaint: CoO for Maize from Tanzania rejected by Customs.  
Products: 1901.90.10: -- Corn flour less 90%less 90%  
NTB-001-109 2.6. Additional taxes and other charges
2023-04-04 Kenya: Namanga Tanzania In process View
Complaint: Discriminatory excise duty  
NTB-001-124 2.3. Issues related to the rules of origin 2023-05-01 Tanzania: Namanga Kenya In process View
Complaint: URT denial of preferential Treatment to Motorcycle Accessories exported to TZ by Silverline Accessories LTD in Kenya. URT is charging full CET despite the exported spares having the EAC Certificate of origin confirming that the spares have been manufactured in Kenya and qualify for the EAC preferential treatment. In addition, URT have declined to respond to interventions by the Kenya Revenue Authority and the EAC Secretariat.

We request URT to grant preferential treatment to Motorcycle Accessories exported by Silverline LTD in Kenya and incase URT have any doubts on the origin they should facilitate delivery of the goods and follow the ROO/protocal/EACCMA procedures to verify & ascertain their concerns.
NTB-001-108 3. Technical barriers to trade (TBT)
B9: TBT Measures n.e.s.
2023-05-02 Kenya: Kenya Bureau of Standards South Africa In process View
Complaint: A South African Exporter has reported that the Kenyan authorities have issued notification on new requirements for exporters and importers to record all trademarks in aid to protect intellectual properties and prevent importation of counterfeit goods into Kenya under the Anti-Counterfeit Act, No. 13 of 2008. This requirement, while it is , has cost implications to the Wine industry of South Africa who have to incur additional costs to enforce it. Further, it is not clear how it will work in practice or how it will be managed especially that applications are done on line and that the registration has 1 year validity, after which it has to be renewed annually.The cost to record is estimated at USD25 000 for the Brands exported to Kenya. The exporters also have the same products analyzed by ISO 17025 labs and pay USD265 per container to confirm full compliance.

The Exporter is of the view that whenever products are to be exported, are certified by SGS as to who the proprietors of the products are. The annual required registration would result in increased cost of the products.
NTB-001-117 2.10. Inadequate or unreasonable customs procedures and charges 2023-05-02 South Africa: Maseru Bridge Lesotho In process View
Complaint: We have done trade with Eswatini for 33 years and tried to be fully compliant with SARS, but they keep changing the rules and moving the goal posts. We have paid R709,000-00 in provisional VAT taxes that have not been returned to my Company via our clearing agent, Kayhil Freight. Kayhil Freight says that SARS is not processing the acquittal documents and paying them. I do not know who is telling the truth, but we remain short on cash flow by R709,000-00 despite submitting each acquittal on time and without fault. SARS officials are now insisting on Removal in Bond licenses for us to use our own vehicles to deliver to customers in Eswatini, and as such we are not allowed to cross the border. We have been charged Penalties, despite trying to follow the rules imposed by SARS. Please help us we are desperate.  
Progress: 1. SADC Business Council made follow up with affected company Tripharma which reported that the first aspect of reimbursement for provisional taxes paid is being addressed through their agent Kayhil Transport. However, the issue of how the company could access bond security has not been resolved. On the issue of not being able to transport goods through South Africa, the company provided clarity that the problem is in the delay of issuing of licences for their vehicles. A request for a meeting with SARS was submitted to address both concerns.
2. On 2nd August 2023, South Africa Focal Point reported that all the refunds for Kayhil were paid to them directly in 2021, as Kayhil was a clearing agent for Mr Craig Smith's company. SARS has provided Kayhil with proof of these payments to ensure transparency and accountability.
Concerning the penalty issued to Tripharm/Kayhil, the penalty was issued after a documentary inspection that was conducted at the port entry, Maseru Bridge, on the goods that were in transit from Lesotho to Eswatini. Upon inspection, it was found that Tripharm/Kayhil contravened Section 64D(1) read with 60(1) of the Customs and Excise Act No. 91 of 1964 as amended, as Tripharm did not have a licensed remover of goods.
Products: 3003.90: Medicaments consisting of two or more constituents mixed together for therapeutic or prophylactic uses, not in measured doses or put up for retail sale (excl. antibiotics containing hormones or steroids used as hormones, but not containing antibiotics, al  
NTB-001-134 2.6. Additional taxes and other charges 2023-05-08 Kenya: Egypt New View
Complaint: The Middle East Glass Manufacturing Company and its subsidiaries: 1) Misr Glass Manufacturing and 2) Middle East Glass Containers in Sadat. Being largest glass container manufacturer in the Middle East & North/East African region located in Egypt. The company has maintained strong business relation with Republic of Kenya over the last decade(s) being key glass supplier for more than 12 years to most of big manufacturing companies (some of them are big multinational companies) with superior track record of commitments in terms of quality standards and satisfying customer demands, continuity of supply, meeting their expectations and needs of glass container.
Egypt is member state of COMESA trade agreement (Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa), which support enhancing the relation and volume of trade between the company and Kenyan customers. Below table shows the amounts that has been exported to Kenya in the last 5 years:

2019 = US$ 10,325,336
2020 = US$ 10, 929, 362
2021 = US$ 8, 122, 525
2022 = US$ 8, 848, 972
2023 = US$ 7,322,062

Starting March 2020, Kenya has applied Extra Excise of 25% on all imported glass bottles (excluding pharmaceutical glass bottles) – copy attached - which limit the advantage given to all COMESA countries. This law has been already appealed by other glass container manufacturer in Tanzania and they successfully were able to remove it.
In addition, Starting September 2023, Excise duty applied on imported glass bottles has been increased to be 35% instead of 25% with no clear reason or justification. This additional duty applies by the Finance Act No. 4 of 2023 – copy attached - has prevented Middle East Glass from its fair competition against other glass manufacturers in the region and also against the agreement of COMESA.
We believe the main reason behind all these amendments is to support the local producer Milly Glass Works Ltd. Address: Liwatoni Road, Mvita, Road, Mombasa, Kenya, Near the Mombasa Yacht Club.
Hence, we seek support to waive all the glass exported from Egypt to Kenya from implementation of the excessive Excise Duties similar to the case of Tanzania case.
Progress: 1. During the NTBs workshop 17th - 19th April 2024, Egypt reported that the legislation is still providing a barrier to Egypt exports to Kenya. The two countries agreed that this issue will form part of the agenda for the proposed bilateral meeting by 28th June 2024.  
NTB-001-118 8.7. Costly Road user charges /fees 2023-05-16 Democratic Republic of the Congo: Mitaka, Lualaba province Democratic republic of Congo Namibia In process View
Complaint: DRC authorities in Mutaka, Lualaba province are charging 100 United states dollars for scanning each commercial truck loaded with cargo.

Cumbersome barriers, lengthy procedures have caused unprecedented congestion of hundreds of trucks in Mutaka area.

Truck drivers no sanitation, no wellness facilities, power security. One truck driver died in his truck on the due to Kasumbalesa border.
Progress: 1. On 22 May 2023, DRC Focal Point reported that the complaint had just been submitted to the competent service (Ministry of Foreign Trade) and that investigations would be undertaken as soon as possible for resolution.  
NTB-001-125 2.8. Lengthy and costly customs clearance procedures 2023-06-01 Democratic Republic of the Congo: Malawi In process View
Complaint: Cross Border truck drivers from Malawi, Zambia and other COMESA Member States face cumbersome procedures of clearing goods and other transit issues at the relevant border post in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). In particular the following is reported:
1. Scanner at Mutaka- Cumbersome payment procedures for the scanner ($100) and forced parking ($30) which has led to congestion for the drivers as well as serious security concerns.
2. Unnecessary stoppages along Kasumbalesa-Kolwezi Corridor causing massive delays.
3. Delayed document processing by Mining houses.
4. Unfair treatment of drivers in an event of accidents, sickness and death.
Progress: 1. On 19th June 2023, the Focal Point for DRC advised that the matter will be submitted to the competent authorities in order to find an appropriate solution.
2. COMESA Secretariat facilitated a trilateral meeting held on 21 August between DRC, Malawi and Zambia during which DRC informed the meeting that the scanner and parking fees would be reviewed with the aim to get them scrapped off. DRC would also look into the lengthy and costly processing of documentation by mining houses with a view to improve the processes .
4. Following this meeting the Secretariat wrote to DRC requesting progress on feedback regarding implementation of the agreed actions to resolve the issues raised .
3. During the 3rd meeting of the COMESA NTBs forum held on 20- 22 September 2023 , Malawi reported that stakeholders were still experiencing the challenges but conformed that DRC had scrapped the scanner fees however , the scrapping of fees for scanner charges could only be considered resolved upon receipt of documentary evidence (Letter from DRC).
4. d) During the NTBs workshop 17th - 19th April 2024, DRC Focal Point confirmed that the scanner and parking charges have been lifted. However, Malawi NFP reported that their truck drivers are still paying for these services and the NTBs has not been resolved.
NTB-001-120 7.5. Lengthy procedures 2023-06-12 Democratic Republic of the Congo: Zambia In process View
Complaint: SADC Truck drivers at all Borders with DRC are experiencing cumbersome payment procedures for the scanner costing $100 and forced parking costing $30 which has led to congestion (long queues) subjecting drivers to as; no sanitation, delayment on average by 8 days and serious security concerns; and Delayed document processing by mining houses i.e. It takes an average of 14 - 30 days to be cleared after loading.  
Progress: 1. On 19th June 2023, the Focal Point for DRC advised that the matter will be submitted to the competent authorities in order to find an appropriate solution.
2. COMESA Secretariat facilitated a trilateral meeting held on 21 August between DRC, Malawi and Zambia during which DRC informed the meeting that the scanner and parking fees would be reviewed with the aim to get them scrapped off. DRC would also look into the lengthy and costly processing of documentation by mining houses with a view to improve the processes .
4. Following this meeting the Secretariat wrote to DRC requesting progress on feedback regarding implementation of the agreed actions to resolve the issues raised .
3. During the 3rd meeting of the COMESA NTBs forum held on 20- 22 September 2023 , Zambia reported that DRC had scrapped the scanner fees however , the scrapping of fees for scanner charges could only be considered resolved upon receipt of documentary evidence (Letter from DRC). Zambia reported that they were waiting for official communication from DRC confirming suspension of scanner charges .
NTB-001-128 2.4. Import licensing 2023-06-23 Zimbabwe: Johannesburg/Pretoria South Africa In process View
Complaint: Reference is made to a resolved complaint with number NTB-000-966, which pertained to a problem with import licensing requirements into Zimbabwe.

The complainant was a Zambian exporter of yeast that was experiencing challenges in obtaining import permits from the Authorities in Zimbabwe, which permits were not issued when requested. This complaint is similar to the problem experienced by Rymco (Pty) Ltd, trading as Anchor Yeast, being hindered in exporting yeast from South Africa to Zimbabwe.

The date of resolution is indicated as 06 April 2023. A status note pertaining to the complaint reads as follows: “During the COMESA Regional Capacity Building Workshop for NMCs and National Focal Points held from 3 to 6 April 2023, Zimbabwe Focal Points reported that import permits were no longer required as the products have been placed on open general import license. This NTB was therefore resolved.”

South Africa requests confirmation on whether the lifting of the import licensing requirement on yeast also applies to SADC countries, specifically South Africa.
NTB-001-127 8.8. Issues related to transit 2023-07-25 Mozambique: Beira Route Malawi In process View
Complaint: Professional Drivers Union in Malawi are concerned with reduced transit limit time to 21hrs by Mozambique - Initially the transit time was 72hrs. This change brings about healthy and safety concern to drivers. Drivers are concerned on road conditions, mechanical faults and time to rest on the road which makes it difficult to meet this newly set time limit. They opt for the 72hrs as it were because this time limit gave an allowance to delays encountered in transit and it was good for safe driving.  
NTB-001-141 5.5. Import licensing requirements 2023-08-15 Uganda In process View
On August 15, 2023, the South Sudan government, represented by the South Sudan National Bureau of Standards, issued a memo affecting importers in the country. The memo stipulates that all food items imported into South Sudan must be accompanied by a Certificate of Conformity (CoC), which includes an attached Certificate of Analysis from a reputable laboratory. This new requirement has several implications like Extended Process Duration, Business Impediments among others.
NTB-001-151 8.8. Issues related to transit 2023-09-13 Mozambique: Beira Port Malawi New View
Complaint: The Malawi pigeon pea export consignment to India has been detained at Beira port in Mozambique for the following reasons:
1. 275Mt for Grey Matter - Investigation on issues of origin. However, the consignment bears Malawi custom seals and documents, emphasizing its Malawi origin.
2. 1500MT for Africa Fertilizer Ltd – Rules regarding fumigation. All the consignment loaded in trucks in Malawi, and stuffing was done in containers in Beira.
3. 3275MT for Afrisian Ltd – Customs verification if the cargo is in transit.
NTB-001-143 3. Technical barriers to trade (TBT)
B8: Conformity assessment related to TBT
2023-09-22 Kenya: Namanga Tanzania In process View
Complaint: The consignment of Hermetic Bags manufactured by A to Z Textile Mills Ltd of Arusha Tanzania vide export invoice No. OE/7505/23-24 and Road Consignment Note No. 306 was seized by Kenyan Bureau of Standards (KEBS) and held for twenty (20) days as from 22nd September 2023 to 12th October 2023 against the Mutual Recognition arrangement of certified products in the community as per the dictates of SQMT Act of 2006.

The product is certified by Tanzania Bureau of Standard (TBS) as conforming to EAC standard EAS 985-1:2020 and given license No. 4290.

Test results of a sample collected by KEBS from the seized consignment proved that the product conforms to the requirements of the standard - EAS 985-1:2020.

The seizure by KEBS robbed the Tanzanian Company an opportunity to trade, delayed the transfer of goods to her client in Nairobi and loss of TZS 1,668,205/= paid for warehouse rent and reloading of the goods.

Seizure notice, Test results from KEBS, Invoice, Payment receipt and TBS letter to KEBS are attached for reference.

Therefore, I request Kenyan Authorities to;
i. Respect Mutual Recognition arrangement of certified products
ii. Refund the amount of money which was paid by the exporter for unjustifiable seizure of certified goods from Tanzania
NTB-001-136 2.6. Additional taxes and other charges 2023-10-03 Tanzania: TRA Kenya In process View
Complaint: URT Denial of preferential Market Access for Kibo Motorcycle transferred from Kenya into URT. URT is instead demanding for full CET instead of granting the preferential treatment as the motorcycle has been accompanied with the certificates of Origin. We urge URT to grant preferential treatment to Kenya manufactured motor cycles.  
NTB-001-147 2.2. Arbitrary customs classification 2023-10-17 Kenya: Namanga Tanzania In process View
Complaint: Increased valuation of sales price of ceramic tile imported with no reasonable explanation from the local tax authorities. As far a cost is concerned, the production cost plus, long-distance transportation and customs clearance fees is higher than these of local producers. Therefore, we request Republic of Kenya to remove the requirements of uplifting the custom value and to use the local price.  
NTB-001-146 2.8. Lengthy and costly customs clearance procedures 2023-11-01 Mozambique: Maputo Port Zimbabwe In process View
Complaint: Our Company , Blackwood Hodge Zimbabwe , (PVT. LTD) have been importing Vehicles using Maputo Port and never had challenges with customs since all paper work and documentation is always in order .We are the official distributors of Tata Motors commercial Vehicles here in Zimbabwe. We are a registered company here in Zimbabwe since 2007 and Trading as Blackwood Hodge Zimbabwe limited.
As per our supplier Invoice number 750966093 and BL number MOLU18005431182 DT. 30.09.2023 for one Unit LP 909 40-Seater Bus with Chassis number MAT382042P8R10426 was dispatched from Mumbai port, India via Vessel Eternal Ace to Maputo Port. The Vessel was docked on date- and all the Relevant procedures were done by our representative Payflex Trading Lda RUA ROMAO FERNANDES FARINHA NO:75 1ST FLOOR SUITE NR. 8ALTO MAE B. MAPUTO MOZAMBIQUE NUIT: 400379394 GIVEMORE GURI MOB 879304844 / 849304844.

We are writing to report serious challenges we are facing from the office of the Customs Director, Southern Region Director (DRS) which authorises the release of the bus.
Our bus is now being held by Customs at Maputo port, in our view, without any valid reasons and now we might be facing legal action for fraud from our customer who placed an order for bus and paid us 50% deposit as well. Pls note this bus is for Ministry of Education of Zimbabwe -Bulawayo Polytechnic.
The customs office has been holding on to the clearing process for over 3 weeks and is not communicating the reasons for the delays to us the importer . Our bus belongs to Bulawayo Polytechnic (which is under ministry of Education here in Zimbabwe) and all documents are in order. This incident has caused our Business a Loss of sale as well as hampered our reputation in the market. Also, we should note that this bus was one of the first buses we were to supply to Ministry of Education in Zimbabwe. Unfortunately, the Director has refused to release our in-transit cargo to Zimbabwe.
we have attached documentary evidence and report from our Maputo Agents explaining what transpired in detail for your urgent / immediate actions.’
Progress: On 5th December 2023, the SADC NTB unit submitted following report from the Directorate of Customs ,Mozambique :
Through Customs Broker Florentina Virgilio Alberto Zunguze, a customs transit declaration was submitted with no. 23362286972, together with a Delivery Order with no. 23/346, dated October 25, 2023, passed by Manica Freight Services Moç a favor of Blackwood Hodge (Zimbabwe) PVT Ltd; a provisional License with no. 05 through which the Maritime Transport Institute authorizes Payflex Trading Lda to carry out the activity of Freight Agency in International Transit; a commercial invoice with no. 750966093, dated 30.09.2023, in favor of Blackwood Hodge (Zimbabwe) PVT Lda and B/l with no. MOLU18005431182.
By Law
The customs transit of goods in Mozambique is supported, among other legal provisions, by the Customs Clearance Regulation of Goods approved by Ministerial Diploma no. 51/2019, of 24 May and the Customs Transit Regulation approved by Ministerial Diploma no. 116 /2013, of August 8, as highlighted by Service Order No. 06/AT/DGA/410/2021, of February 24, a copy of which is attached.

From our appreciation
The confusion created by the Forwarder with the connivance of the Shipping Agent immediately becomes apparent, taking into account that the same merchandise has as a party to notify two different people, in this case Blackwood Hodge (Zimbabwe) PVT Lda, according to the notice of arrival and Payflex Trading Lda, according to the B/L;
Another aspect worth highlighting is the fact that there are forged documents, with the sole aim of guaranteeing benefits within the scope of the traffic regulations, since strictly speaking, the B/L must be issued in accordance with the data contained in the manifest of cargo delivered by the ship's captain in view of the tax entry, therefore, changes made by the shipping agent are not permitted, as is the case in this case;
On the SeW platform, the declaration was rejected due to this procedure being considered incorrect and, to a certain extent, criminal, if any malicious intent is proven in the change made by Manica Freight Services Mozambique
NTB-001-155 2.6. Additional taxes and other charges
2023-11-03 Egypt: Egyptian Tax Authority Zambia New View
Complaint: On November 3, 2023, the Egyptian Official Gazette published Law No. 177 of 2023 amending provisions of the Value Added Tax Law promulgated by Law No. 67 of 2016, including the provisions related to the tiers of cigarette taxation. The amendments to Serial 1/B of Law No. 177 of 2023 bluntly prohibits imported cigarettes from of the first tier and restricts them to “cigarettes produced by local factories”, which favors and gives preferential treatment to local products.

It is worth noting that the addition of the aforementioned provision has significant repercussions on the competitive ability of other companies, especially that the first tier has the lowest priced cigarettes in the market and are more economical for citizens. Consequently, this contradicts COMESA national treatment article, causing harm through the discrimination of specific products that may lead to market monopolization.

Various companies manufacture their brands in factories in COMESA member states and import and sell it in Egypt. However, the recent tax amendments that imposed a value-added tax on low-priced cigarettes prevent companies from importing cigarettes and limits sales to local production.
Progress: 1. Egypt to respond on the NTB with Zambia on the online reporting system by 1st Week of June 2024  
NTB-001-144 2.13. Issues related to Pre-Shipment Inspections 2023-11-10 South Africa: Durban sea Port Lesotho New View
Complaint: The Release Documents is 7 days prior to vessel arrival because of cargo dues and upon receiving Arrival Notice. The EDI document was sent for release on the 9th of November 2023 the query came in on the 10th of November 2023, and normally it would be released in less than 6 hours but up to date it hasn't been released. We need the import urgently to be released in order to avoid any delays with our Export Orders.  
Products: 6006.32: Dyed fabrics, knitted or crocheted, of synthetic fibres, of a width of > 30 cm (excl. warp knit fabrics "incl. those made on galloon knitting machines", those containing by weight >= 5% of elastomeric yarn or rubber thread, and pile fabrics, incl. "long and 6006.34: Printed fabrics, knitted or crocheted, of synthetic fibres, of a width of > 30 cm (excl. warp knit fabrics "incl. those made on galloon knitting machines", those containing by weight >= 5% of elastomeric yarn or rubber thread, and pile fabrics, incl. "lo  
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