Auction Looms for Stranded Cargo Destined for South Sudan in Kenyan Warehouses

NAIROBI –In a bid to address the mounting issue of stranded cargo destined for South
Sudan, the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) has announced plans to auction off goods that
have overstayed in warehouses in Nairobi.

This decision comes as the owners of 85 lots of cargo, intended for both South Sudan and
Kenya, face logistical hurdles including delays attributed to clearing and forwarding agents,
security concerns, and recent regulatory directives.

According to a Gazette Notice issued by George Aduwi, Chief Manager of the KRA’s
Customs and Border Control Department, the auction is slated to take place from July 31
to August 2.

The notice cites Section 42 of the East African Community Customs Management Act,
under which goods not removed from customs custody within 30 days of the notice may be
sold via online auction.

“The government of South Sudan’s recent directives and security challenges along the
Northern Corridor have significantly disrupted the flow of cargo from Kenya,” noted Edwin
Karissa, a clearing agent based in Mombasa.

He highlighted concerns raised by traders over new regulations, including a controversial
$350 fee imposed for Electronic Cargo Tracking Notes (ECTN).

South Sudan’s Minister of Finance and Planning, Dr. Bak Barnaba Chol, defended the new
charges and appointed Invesco Uganda Ltd to oversee the implementation, under the
supervision of the South Sudan Revenue Authority (SSRA).

However, traders have contested these measures in court, arguing they are detrimental to
business operations.

The goods earmarked for auction encompass a wide range of items, from building
materials and pharmaceuticals to raw materials and used clothing. Interested buyers are
invited to inspect the goods on July 29 and 30 at specified locations during office hours.

The auction serves as a regulatory measure to decongest customs warehouses and ensure
compliance with regional customs laws.

As the deadline approaches, stakeholders are closely monitoring developments, amidst ongoing efforts to resolve the logistical challenges affecting cargo transit to South Sudan.

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