Resolved complaints

Showing items 61 to 80 of 520
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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Status Actions
NTB-000-604 7.5. Lengthy procedures 2013-09-19 Zambia: Chirundu South Africa Resolved
2013-11-13
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Complaint: This complaint is registered by FESARTA.
There are excessive delays at the Chirundu border post between Zimbabwe and Zambia
Trucks are taking around 5 days to transit the border and are completing only one trip Beira, Zambia and return, per month. Their monthly kilometres travelled is down to around 5000 kms per month. No transporter can accommodate such a low utilization of his fleet.
The queue on the Zimbabwe side, stretches for anything up to 10 kms.
There are several reasons for the delays at this border post, including:
Strict application of new rules and procedures by the Bank of Zambia and ZRA
The scanning machine has been under repair
There were special arrangements for Ministers visiting the border and so restricting the passage of trucks
The commercial operating hours are from 0800 to 1630. This is insufficient for the traffic flow
A tug-of-war between ZRP and ZIMRA as to which should control the traffic on the Zim side
When a crisis like this occurs, officials "make a plan" and clear the border of backlog.
It is understood that it costs $10 to get to the front of the queue and $20 to get into customs. Transit can then be made in 12 hours.
This is not acceptable.
There should be a permanent process in place to ensure the border does not get congested.
One solution, is to open the border from 6am to midnight, as with Beitbridge.
Extra security will have to be put in place to accommodate this night traffic and parking.
Urgent and effective measures must be taken.
 
Resolution status note: On 7th October 2013, the Zimbabwe Focal Point reported that the relevant NMC members comprising Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure Development, Zimbabwe Revenue Authority and the Ministry of Industry and Commerce held a meeting on 4 October 2013 to consider the urgent complaint raised by the Transport Operators’ Association of Zimbabwe also posted on the online system as NTB 604. The meeting observed that that the congestion was a result of increased traffic on the North South Corridor and also increase in traffic from Beira Port. This is coupled with inadequate infrastructure at the border which was not designed to contain the large volume of traffic.
The meeting identified the following factors that contributed towards the congestion as well as a way forward to address the problem resulted in clearing the congestion.
1. The congestion which was experienced recently was partly caused by break down of scanner on the Zambian side due to heat. The Zambians are scanning 100% on commercial cargo. This also contributed to the problem.
2. Inadequate infrastructure is the main challenge at the border. North-bound trucks are only released four at a time because there is no holding space on the Zambian side.
3. ZIMRA has a challenge of accommodation at the border, so when they send their relief staff they will be staying in Kariba, which is also costly for them.
4. Problems of congestion at Chirundu can only be solved by engaging the Zambian counter-parts since the problem is brought about by north bound traffic.
5. ZIMRA is pre-clearing most trucks but Clearing Agents release trucks in batches to minimise movement across the border. This creates additional congestion. However, ZIMRA have already engaged the agents on the issue.
6. ZIMRA has already engaged ZRA and they have made an administrative arrangement to work up to 10pm whenever the traffic volume is high. ZIMRA have also reacted to ease the congestion problem by sending 19 additional staff.
7. It emerged that there is lack of control of trucks outside the border area. The police and the Rural District Council seem not to be playing their role. The trucks would also be mixed with that carrying hazardous and flammable goods which is very risk.
8. The Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure Development is going to set up a committee which will visit Chirundu Border Post to get more information from the people on the ground.

Way forward

1 Zimbabwe set up a committee to visit the border to establish facts from the people on the ground.
2. Zimbabwe will make effort to engage her Zambian counter-parts so that they create some holding space for north-bound traffic.
3. Zimbabwe Ministry of Transport is working on creating temporary parks on the Zimbabwean side as well as building accommodation for border agencies.
 
NTB-000-604 7.5. Lengthy procedures 2013-09-19 Zambia: Chirundu South Africa Resolved
2013-11-13
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Complaint: This complaint is registered by FESARTA.
There are excessive delays at the Chirundu border post between Zimbabwe and Zambia
Trucks are taking around 5 days to transit the border and are completing only one trip Beira, Zambia and return, per month. Their monthly kilometres travelled is down to around 5000 kms per month. No transporter can accommodate such a low utilization of his fleet.
The queue on the Zimbabwe side, stretches for anything up to 10 kms.
There are several reasons for the delays at this border post, including:
Strict application of new rules and procedures by the Bank of Zambia and ZRA
The scanning machine has been under repair
There were special arrangements for Ministers visiting the border and so restricting the passage of trucks
The commercial operating hours are from 0800 to 1630. This is insufficient for the traffic flow
A tug-of-war between ZRP and ZIMRA as to which should control the traffic on the Zim side
When a crisis like this occurs, officials "make a plan" and clear the border of backlog.
It is understood that it costs $10 to get to the front of the queue and $20 to get into customs. Transit can then be made in 12 hours.
This is not acceptable.
There should be a permanent process in place to ensure the border does not get congested.
One solution, is to open the border from 6am to midnight, as with Beitbridge.
Extra security will have to be put in place to accommodate this night traffic and parking.
Urgent and effective measures must be taken.
 
Resolution status note: On 13 November 2013 ZIMRA reported that the problem of long queues at Chirundu had been resolved and there were no queues at the border thereby resolving this NTB.  
NTB-000-603 2.9. Issues related to transit fees 2013-05-01 Mozambique: Delegação Aduaneira de Zobwe Malawi Resolved
2013-09-13
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Complaint: From May 2013 the government of Mozambique introduced a single window entry customs system which requires transiting goods should pay a transit bond on crossing Mozambique. However since implementation to date the system is not working properly as trucks are forced to stop at borders viz:- Zobue, Cuchamano, Miranje just to mention a few for long periods in some instances x3 weeks to a month before they can be cleared to cross. This is mainly because Mozambique bond is different to the rest of the regions bond sytems. In Mozambique they require a bond agent to post the equivalent amount of bond being applied for in cash value, i.e. if bond is USD1,000,000 then the agent has to hand over USD1,000,000 in cash either to govt or customs for the bond to be established. This has resulted in few people able to afford bond as such only a few agents are available and at the same time goods requiring their services are just huge volumes with huge values that the bonds are not sufficient to carter for all transiters. This is making exporters or importers waste a lot of time at the border thereby missing delivery schedules. At the same time transporters are raising freight charges as they are only able to make a single trip in a month than they used to do previously, almost x4 minimum. This is causing rising costs of goods in neighbouring countries and also missed opportunities for private traders like our company.  
Resolution status note: On 11th September 2013, Mozambique Focal Point reported that the alleged NTB´s related to the transit procedures in Mozambique, were removed, through the approval of Ministerial Diploma nº 116/2013 of 8th of August, which approves the Norms and Specific Principles to be taken into account in the implementation of Customs Transit of Goods. This Ministerial Diploma repeals the Ministerial Diploma nº 307/2012, of 15 of November.

Pursuance to reaching a common understanding on this matter, FCFASA members in Malawi reported that CAFAAM Executive Committee Members together with Malawi Revenue Authority, Ministry of Trade and Ministry of Transport and Executives from Malawi, travelled to Cuchamano and Nyamapanda to appreciate the various challenges (delays, costs, etc.) which came about as a result of the new transit procedures introduced in Mozambique in April 2013. The delegation met with Mozambique customs , Beira , Port authorities and had an opportunity to interact with Mozambican Clearing and Forwarding Agents and some Malawian drivers during the launch of the Diploma nº 116/2013 of 8th of August.

The delegation reported:-
1. It was agreed that the new Transit Bond Procedures in Mozambique are in line with international practice and appreciated the fact that in the absence of these procedures, a lot of traders were smuggling goods into Mozambique under the guise of “transit cargo”.
2. Mozambican Clearing agents had been given adequate notice to put in place the required bond guarantees although they were not ready by implementation date.
3. The general consensus was that the conditions (e.g. the required collateral) set up by banks, insurance companies and the authorities themselves for setting up the transit bond guarantees were too tough to be met by transporters and forwarding agents.
4. To this end, the Mozambican Government’s had exempted some products (tobacco, tea, sugar, cotton, etc.) from monetary bonding and reduced bond values from 100% on containerized cargo to 20% or 35% on break-bulk cargo. This measure would reduce pressure on the available bond levels for other cargo not exempted.
5. That there was need to license more “Despachantes” to speed up clearance procedures or alternatively, allow forwarding agents to be doing own customs clearing of cargo which they are moving.
6. There was need for Station Managers at the various borders to be taking stock of trucks available at the borders every day and talk to drivers who have stayed at the border for more than a day to encourage them to proceed with their journey so as to minimise the prevalent corrupt practices by some customs officers, guards, clearing agent.
7. A proposal to set up a “Help Desk” at the borders to achieve transparency and quarterly meetings between the various players at senior level.
8. Joint border training sessions between customs and other authorities and clearing & forwarding agents to be enhanced.
9.That various customs authorities establish a deliberate policy for Accrediting Clearing agents based on an exhaustive Risk assessment of each one of the agents and track record in order to “smoke out” fraudulent clearing and forwarding agents who cheat importers or assist them with smuggling practices,.

10. That Mozambican authorities should endeavor to translate and display the various rules and regulations into English to enable none Portuguese speaking people to understand the applicable regulations.
11.Mozambique customs advised that:
a. Clearing Agent need to quickly do a Supplementary Entry if there are any changes to a declaration (e.g. amending border of exit, amending values or quantity of goods, etc.) to avoid truck delays at the border or bond acquittals being blocked.
b. Once CORRECT documents are lodged and payment effected, their processing time is up to 3 hours only.
c. They would as far as possible, be rotating their staff to avoid corruption if they familiarize themselves too much to one border station.
 
Products: 0902.40: Black fermented tea and partly fermented tea, whether or not flavoured, in immediate packings of > 3 kg  
NTB-000-601 8.8. Issues related to transit 2013-07-12 Kenya: All Transit Entry Points into Keny Uganda Resolved
2015-12-21
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Complaint: Kenya Ministry of Agriculture Animal Industry and Fisheries, State Department for Livestock, Directorate of Veterinary Services, has introduced a new requirement under notice SOPS for Transit Inspection (1), for Hides and Skins consignments in transit through Kenya issued on 12th July 2013, that:
1. Transit goods are for all intent and purposes Imports
2. That transit cargo be subject to physical inspection by an inspector
3. Exporters transiting through Kenya to possess Import permits from the countries of destination
4. Exporters to poses Transit Permits
5. Payment of Transit fees
The requirement is to be effective on 21st July 2013.
Accordingly, this is a new NTBs imposed by the Kenyan Government on Ugandan goods transiting through Kenya. This new requirement is affecting 8 Ugandan companies in the business of exporting hides and skins that transit through Kenya. The measure will increase the cost of doing business because companies will require acquire transit permits for a fee, and delays related to physical inspection. More over the companies have been given a very short time (8 days including weekends) to comply with the new measure.
The Government of Republic of Uganda is of a strong view that this requirement be removed due to reasons above and contravenes the EAC Integration process through the Protocols signed so far. It is also erroneous to refer to transit goods as Imports as is done in the same notice.
 
Resolution status note: On 21st December 2015, Uganda Focal Point reported that the NTB was resolved by Kenya. The Requirement is no longer applicable  
NTB-000-600 8.1. Government Policy and regulations 2013-07-17 South Africa: Durban sea Port Resolved
2016-09-13
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Complaint: This complaint is registered by FESARTA.
The South African Cross-Border Road Transport Agency (CBRTA) is fining transporters for transporting goods from Gauteng to Durban without a cross-border permit. The fine is R2000 (USD200) per truck.
The goods are being transported from Botswana and offloaded in a warehouse in Gauteng, South Africa.
The goods are then re-loaded on to different vehicles and transported to Durban.
The vehicles transporting the goods from Botswana, have cross-border permits.
There should be no reason for vehicles transporting goods from Gauteng to Durban to have cross-border permits, even though the goods come from Botswana. The transportation is wholly within South Africa and on South African vehicles.
See NTB 535/6 for a similar complaint.
 
Resolution status note: On 13th September 2016, FESARTA advised that the transporters were no longer facing this barrier so the NTB is resolved. The explanation from CBRTA was acceptable to FESRATA  
NTB-000-598 8.7. Costly Road user charges /fees 2013-07-10 Mozambique: Tete Bascala,Tete Bridge Mozambique Resolved
2015-02-10
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Complaint: There is a charge only on foreign vehicles over 3500kg crossing the Tete bridge initially US$250 and then US$75 every time the vehicle crosses the bridge. The vehicle involved is a Crane truck used in construction sites in and around Tete.
The vehicle can travel all the way from Maputo and operate on the south side of the river without paying any fees but is charged the above very high fees once it goes to the north side of the bridge.
 
Resolution status note: On 10 February 2015, Mozambique focal point reported that the fees are regulated through the Decree No. 26/2010 available in the online system and that the USD75 fee is only applicable to cross the north bridge. According to the decree establishing the rates, foreign vehicles must pay a stipulated fee of 75 USD on the bridge. However, as indicated by complainant, the vehicle can use alternative route and travel all the way from Maputo and operate on the south side of the river without paying any fees. With this explanation, Mozambique considers the NTB resolved because there is alternative route for foreign vehicles.  
NTB-000-596 8.6. Vehicle standards
Policy/Regulatory
2013-06-19 Mozambique: Dondo , Beira Malawi Resolved
2014-11-20
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Complaint: Mozambique Police at Dondo, Beira have fined a Malawian truck belonging to ZAGAF Transport, truck number ZA8837/BN4273 because of the blue line on the colour of the trailer which is recorded as White in the blue book. White is the primary colour. The trailer has a small blue line and the police are demanding that this should be indicated in the blue book too. The blue book conforms to Malawi vehicle registration requirements where only the primary colour is indicated in the blue book.
 
Resolution status note: On 20th November 2014, Malawi focal point reported that Malawi transporters were no longer experiencing this problem in Mozambique. This NTB was therefore resolved.  
NTB-000-595 2.13. Issues related to Pre-Shipment Inspections 2013-06-10 South Africa: Ficksburg Bridge Lesotho Resolved
2015-03-25
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Complaint: Exporter's containers (in transit to USA) are stopped by South African Revenue Services (SARS) at Ficksburg border post, South Africa and consignments are checked exclusively notwithstanding the fact that they are being checked by the Lesotho Revenue Authority (LRA) before they are dispatched. SARS requires certificate of origin before they can process Electronic Data Interchange and that goods be off-loaded from the containers and then re-loaded and this requires extra manpower thereby adding on the cost of manufacturing. Moreover, exporters have to pay standing charges for transporters as they have to stay overnight at the border as the process takes about 6-12 hours and this impacts negatively on many other shipping processes. The process also causes goods to reach their destinations after the agreed timeframe and as a result exporters fail to meet their customers' requirements.
The incident has happened on more than one occassion.
 
Resolution status note: On 25 March 2015, Lesotho Focal Point reported that the NTB had been resolved and therefore must be removed from the pending cases.  
NTB-000-594 8.8. Issues related to transit 2013-05-21 Zambia: Chirundu South Africa Resolved
2013-09-13
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Complaint: Zambian Police are holding South African CRBTA Permits as security until fines are paid.  
Resolution status note: On 11th July 2013, Zambia focal point reported that, when truck drivers both local and international are found with a case, they are fined and normally asked to pay the fine. However, the drivers give an excuse that they have no money to pay. The Police at that particular check point would then use their initiative of asking for surety from that driver to ensure that the driver pays on his way back. However, since the practice is not covered by law, the officers were sensitized on the issue and have stopped the practice.
On 25 September 2013, South Africa focal point confirmed that the complainant had been consulted and he confirmed that the practice by Zambian police had been stopped. The complaint can therefore be moved to 'resolved complaints’.
 
NTB-000-593 8.7. Costly Road user charges /fees
Policy/Regulatory
2013-05-29 Mozambique: Between Pungue and Mafambise Malawi Resolved
2013-10-28
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Complaint: A Malawian transport company was charged an exorbitant fee of 10, 000 Meticais for expired insurance for horse only between Pungue and Mafambise in Mozambique. This has happened a number of times. Can Mozambique authorities confirm the fee and also provide other relevant information on transit fees, fines and penalties. Information on the various charges and or transit fees is not available for transporters using Mozambique roads along the Beira route.  
Resolution status note: On 18 June 2013, Mozambique focal point submitted a copy of the Decree No. 26/2010 of 14 July 2010 outlining the road user fees applied on Mozambican roads as per Malawi request. This NTB is therefore considered resolved  
NTB-000-593 8.7. Costly Road user charges /fees
Policy/Regulatory
2013-05-29 Mozambique: Between Pungue and Mafambise Malawi Resolved
2013-10-28
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Complaint: A Malawian transport company was charged an exorbitant fee of 10, 000 Meticais for expired insurance for horse only between Pungue and Mafambise in Mozambique. This has happened a number of times. Can Mozambique authorities confirm the fee and also provide other relevant information on transit fees, fines and penalties. Information on the various charges and or transit fees is not available for transporters using Mozambique roads along the Beira route.  
Resolution status note: On 28 October 2013, Mozambique Focal Point submitted Decree No. 26/2010 of 14 July 2010 stipulating the road user fees applied on Mozambican roads as per Malawi request.. The Decree has been uploaded onto the online system under Notifications.  
NTB-000-592 6.2. Administrative fees 2013-05-27 Mozambique: Posto Fiscal de Calomue Malawi Resolved
2013-09-26
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Complaint: administrative charges - transporter was requested to pay 10US$ memorandum of understanding fees  
Resolution status note: However, on 05 June 2013, Mozambique focal point advised that all the vehicles transporting merchandise to Calómue frontier, and others are subject to following payments:
1. On transit, revenue authorities shall cover for one Transit Memo the value of 550, 00 MT. Therefore, Custom Affairs would not collect additional funds.
2. On imports, competent memo is emitted with the stamp that guides the clerk driver to a Tete Customs Affairs, to follow-up the process of customs clearance.
The value of 10 000 meticais being paid by the complainant could possibly refer to fees paid to a customs broker. Therefore, Mozambique requested complainant to provide statements specifying who was responsible for this charge, and present the actual payment receipt, or other document that to enable further action on this issue.
As at 26 September 2013, complainant had not submitted proof of payment as per request from focal point Mozambique, so that Mozambique could introduce some measures to resolve the particular complaint. This complaint is therefore considered resolved on grounds that the response by Focal Point could have adequately answered the query.
 
NTB-000-590 7.1. Arbitrariness 2013-05-16 Mozambique: Delegação Aduaneira de Machipanda (Road) South Africa Resolved
2014-03-17
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Complaint: This complaint is registered by FESARTA.
UNACCEPTABLE PROCEDURE FOR ESCORTING VEHICLES, BY MOZAMBIQUE CUSTOMS
Mozambique customs at Beira should only require the escorting of vehicles between Beira and Machipanda, and return, under special circumstances, eg abnormal or high value loads. The decision to call for escorts is made by the head of customs in Beira.
However, the escorting process is not efficient and reasonable, viz:
• Escorting is called for randomly and often for trucks carrying normal cargo such as tobacco and sugar
• The escorting fee is high at USD100 per truck
• Delays are caused whilst customs waits for 3 or more trucks to be escorted together. Or they may wait until the next day to suit their convenience
• Often, a customs officer does not even travel with the vehicles, but goes in a separate vehicle to take the documents to the next check point. On occasion, the trucks have to wait at the next check point because the officer is not there with the documents
• It is suggested that the escorting fees are merely split up between the various officers.
Escorting should not be necessary since transit bond guarantees are in place and the route between Beira and Machipanda is simple, direct and short. Furthermore, there are several check points along the route.
 
Resolution status note: The Mozambique Revenue Authority clarified that the referred escort fee of USD 100 was illegal. Mozambique Revenue Authority issued the Circular nº09/GD/DRC/2013, of 1st July, that has been published in all customs branches, and also uploaded onto the online system which states in summary that:
• The Fiscal Escort happens only and uniquely in the case of customs transit of high risk merchandise in terms of loss of revenue.
• In this case, Mozambique Revenue Authority will have to support the Escort expenses.
• It is prohibited to collect any values and deductions when this Escort is determined by customs.
 
NTB-000-587 2.8. Lengthy and costly customs clearance procedures
Policy/Regulatory
2013-04-01 Mozambique: Beira Port Zimbabwe Resolved
2013-09-13
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Complaint: Various exporter/importers in Zambia , Zimbabwe , Malawi are facing current challenges with Mozambique customs Authorities , whom I believe are part of the SADC grouping . We request SADC secretariat intervention as SADC to salvage the situation which has seriously affected clearance of goods at the following border posts/ports Machipanda , Nyamapanda , Mwanza and Beira Port

The Complaint :

Zimbabwe German Graphite , Samrec Vermiculite ,Zimbabwe Alloys , William Over , Carnaud Metal Box, Zam Beeef , Unicef Containers have stayed in Beira port for a full month , Cornelder the port authorities are charging huge storage bills which in some cases would out weight the value of the cargo . We have had stakeholders meetings with both customs & Cornelder in Beira but Customs have not accepted any responsibility whilst Cornelder insists on collection of storage.

Shipping lines have also placed Freight Forwarders and transit agents on notice for line demurrage as the empties have exceeded their free period but still full inside the port

Some cargo has expiry dates / short life span like photographic material – will get damaged still in port as the documents are still a mission to be processed by customs

Ships / Vessels are going back empty as the cargo ( exports ) can not be loaded before clearance is done – most minerals from Zambia , Zimbabwe and tobacco from Malawi has been affected as the sailing dates are now one month behind and risk order cancellations
Zimbabwe , Zambia and Malawi are now at the verge of losing millions of dollars on these shipments currently stuck in Mozambique some of which are seasonal goods Mozambique

This problem arose because Mozambique customs introduced an electronic clearing system the single window electronic concept – to migrate from manual processing of entries from 01.04.2013 Coupled to it they also introduced the transit bonds registration and the bonds were to be managed electronically like the Zimbabwe/ Zambia situation
The bonds were requested for all of a sudden and the processes are quite long takes at least ….. (number of )weeks during which cargo was coming into Beira and got stuck and at Machipanda , Nyamapanda & Mwanza land borders to Mozambique
? The Single window concept itself has serious setbacks like it relies on network for connectivity which failed daily and could be own for days at outside ports like Machipanda , Nyamapanda , Mwanza , trucks pile at for weeks before any solution has been in sight
? Customs staff at Machipanda , Nyamapanda & Mwanza border post appear inadequately trained to use the new system as a result smaller queries take one to two days to be resolved , Machipanda & Nyamapanda seems to have have inadequate equipment
All the Despachantes were only given one access code per organization which affected the entry processing badly with documents piling as vessels arrived inland and that even for imports from other regional countries , are initiated from Customs in Beira to give reference numbers called Contra Marcas in order to proceed with the clearances
Alfandega had no fall back method in place as they refused to use the manual method to clear the backlog


Request to Mozambique,


1. Mozambique Ministry of Finance is requested to get customs to consider a parallel system to run with the electronic single window programme to clear the backlog in Beira port now and also consider providing release against Report orders to reduce further downtime in port . This will be a stop gap measure until the customs staff are well versed , fully trained and that the new system can work well

2. Mozambique authorities to facilitate arrangements with Cornelder to consider waiving storage for this special situation or at least offer 75% credit on the bills due which I must say are now astronomical based on the days the cargo has stayed in port both imports and exports

3. Mozambique authorities to facilitate arrangements with shipping lines to consider waiving completely the demurrage due on the empty containers or at least give say 15-21 more days grace period before demurrage starts accruing

4. Mozambique authorities to facilitate arrangements that Mozambique customs get technical assistance to assist roll this new programme out without causing huge catastrophies like this

We trust that our request make sense and look forward to getting your valuable assistance
 
Resolution status note: On 11th September 2013, Mozambique Focal Point reported that the alleged NTB´s related to the transit procedures in Mozambique, were removed, through the approval of Ministerial Diploma nº 116/2013 of 8th of August, which approves the Norms and Specific Principles to be taken into account in the implementation of Customs Transit of Goods. This Ministerial Diploma repeals the Ministerial Diploma nº 307/2012, of 15 of November.

Pursuance to reaching a common understanding on this matter, FCFASA members in Malawi reported that CAFAAM Executive Committee Members together with Malawi Revenue Authority, Ministry of Trade and Ministry of Transport and Executives from Malawi, travelled to Cuchamano and Nyamapanda to appreciate the various challenges (delays, costs, etc.) which came about as a result of the new transit procedures introduced in Mozambique in April 2013. The delegation met with Mozambique customs , Beira , Port authorities and had an opportunity to interact with Mozambican Clearing and Forwarding Agents and some Malawian drivers during the launch of the Diploma nº 116/2013 of 8th of August.

The delegation reported:-
1. It was agreed that the new Transit Bond Procedures in Mozambique are in line with international practice and appreciated the fact that in the absence of these procedures, a lot of traders were smuggling goods into Mozambique under the guise of “transit cargo”.
2. Mozambican Clearing agents had been given adequate notice to put in place the required bond guarantees although they were not ready by implementation date.
3. The general consensus was that the conditions (e.g. the required collateral) set up by banks, insurance companies and the authorities themselves for setting up the transit bond guarantees were too tough to be met by transporters and forwarding agents.
4. To this end, the Mozambican Government’s had exempted some products (tobacco, tea, sugar, cotton, etc.) from monetary bonding and reduced bond values from 100% on containerized cargo to 20% or 35% on break-bulk cargo. This measure would reduce pressure on the available bond levels for other cargo not exempted.
5. That there was need to license more “Despachantes” to speed up clearance procedures or alternatively, allow forwarding agents to be doing own customs clearing of cargo which they are moving.
6. There was need for Station Managers at the various borders to be taking stock of trucks available at the borders every day and talk to drivers who have stayed at the border for more than a day to encourage them to proceed with their journey so as to minimise the prevalent corrupt practices by some customs officers, guards, clearing agent.
7. A proposal to set up a “Help Desk” at the borders to achieve transparency and quarterly meetings between the various players at senior level.
8. Joint border training sessions between customs and other authorities and clearing & forwarding agents to be enhanced.
9.That various customs authorities establish a deliberate policy for Accrediting Clearing agents based on an exhaustive Risk assessment of each one of the agents and track record in order to “smoke out” fraudulent clearing and forwarding agents who cheat importers or assist them with smuggling practices,.

10. That Mozambican authorities should endeavor to translate and display the various rules and regulations into English to enable none Portuguese speaking people to understand the applicable regulations.
11.Mozambique customs advised that:
a. Clearing Agent need to quickly do a Supplementary Entry if there are any changes to a declaration (e.g. amending border of exit, amending values or quantity of goods, etc.) to avoid truck delays at the border or bond acquittals being blocked.
b. Once CORRECT documents are lodged and payment effected, their processing time is up to 3 hours only.
c. They would as far as possible, be rotating their staff to avoid corruption if they familiarize themselves too much to one border station.
 
NTB-000-585 8.8. Issues related to transit
Policy/Regulatory
2013-04-29 Mozambique: Delegação Aduaneira de Zobwe Malawi Resolved
2013-09-11
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Complaint: New transit procedures are causing a lot of delays in the clearance of transit cargo through Mozambique Ports. According to the new transit procedures, Malawian transporters /clearing agents are requested to make cash deposits bond requirements to the Mozambican customs at the borders or prior to transit clearance at the Port of discharge to Malawi and other neighbouring countries like Zimbabwe, Zambia, among others. According to Mozambique, the requirement is made because transit goods end up disappearing within Mozambique and their Government lose a lot of revenue. In addition to that, customs clearing and Forwarding Agents need to undergo re-registration formalities.

The major problem about these issues is that most Malawian businesses were not aware and there is a crisis at the borders with a lot of Malawian trucks that cannot clear. Even on the part of Mozambican customs they are also learning the new system.
 
Resolution status note: On 11th September 2013, Mozambique Focal Point reported that the alleged NTB´s related to the transit procedures in Mozambique, were removed, through the approval of Ministerial Diploma nº 116/2013 of 8th of August, which approves the Norms and Specific Principles to be taken into account in the implementation of Customs Transit of Goods. This Ministerial Diploma repeals the Ministerial Diploma nº 307/2012, of 15 of November.

Pursuance to reaching a common understanding on this matter, FCFASA members in Malawi reported that CAFAAM Executive Committee Members together with Malawi Revenue Authority, Ministry of Trade and Ministry of Transport and Executives from Malawi, travelled to Cuchamano and Nyamapanda to appreciate the various challenges (delays, costs, etc.) which came about as a result of the new transit procedures introduced in Mozambique in April 2013. The delegation met with Mozambique customs , Beira , Port authorities and had an opportunity to interact with Mozambican Clearing and Forwarding Agents and some Malawian drivers during the launch of the Diploma nº 116/2013 of 8th of August.

The delegation reported:-
1. It was agreed that the new Transit Bond Procedures in Mozambique are in line with international practice and appreciated the fact that in the absence of these procedures, a lot of traders were smuggling goods into Mozambique under the guise of “transit cargo”.
2. Mozambican Clearing agents had been given adequate notice to put in place the required bond guarantees although they were not ready by implementation date.
3. The general consensus was that the conditions (e.g. the required collateral) set up by banks, insurance companies and the authorities themselves for setting up the transit bond guarantees were too tough to be met by transporters and forwarding agents.
4. To this end, the Mozambican Government’s had exempted some products (tobacco, tea, sugar, cotton, etc.) from monetary bonding and reduced bond values from 100% on containerized cargo to 20% or 35% on break-bulk cargo. This measure would reduce pressure on the available bond levels for other cargo not exempted.
5. That there was need to license more “Despachantes” to speed up clearance procedures or alternatively, allow forwarding agents to be doing own customs clearing of cargo which they are moving.
6. There was need for Station Managers at the various borders to be taking stock of trucks available at the borders every day and talk to drivers who have stayed at the border for more than a day to encourage them to proceed with their journey so as to minimise the prevalent corrupt practices by some customs officers, guards, clearing agent.
7. A proposal to set up a “Help Desk” at the borders to achieve transparency and quarterly meetings between the various players at senior level.
8. Joint border training sessions between customs and other authorities and clearing & forwarding agents to be enhanced.
9.That various customs authorities establish a deliberate policy for Accrediting Clearing agents based on an exhaustive Risk assessment of each one of the agents and track record in order to “smoke out” fraudulent clearing and forwarding agents who cheat importers or assist them with smuggling practices,.

10. That Mozambican authorities should endeavor to translate and display the various rules and regulations into English to enable none Portuguese speaking people to understand the applicable regulations.
11.Mozambique customs advised that:
a. Clearing Agent need to quickly do a Supplementary Entry if there are any changes to a declaration (e.g. amending border of exit, amending values or quantity of goods, etc.) to avoid truck delays at the border or bond acquittals being blocked.
b. Once CORRECT documents are lodged and payment effected, their processing time is up to 3 hours only.
c. They would as far as possible, be rotating their staff to avoid corruption if they familiarize themselves too much to one border station.
 
NTB-000-583 6.7. Other 2013-03-26 Zimbabwe: Kariba Zimbabwe Resolved
2013-07-30
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Complaint: Kariba border post, Zimbabwe. Imports from Zambia; one truck carrying two imports from Zamleather for two different Zimbabwean companies. VAT paid in Harare and transferred to Kariba by ZIMRA. ZIMRA system has IT problem and duty of 5% was to be charged. Protest was lodged and ZIMRA advised that there is no duty because of the Comesa certificates. A day went by and we were then advised that our one shipment had been cleared: with 2% duty. We were informed that there were new acts passed and duty was now applicable. I could find no record of this and refused to pay extra duty in order to clear the VAT and duty now short on the second shipment. ZIMRA Harare advised that this was an IT issue and they were working on it. Third day begins and Kariba say no way to clear shipment without duty being paid. Harare advise Kariba to raise manual IM4 entry, Kariba say the duty is still payable. We are now going into the weekend and I cannot see my truck being cleared until Monday. I have had this issue before in a slightly different context where ZIMRA took duty paid for a shipment on its way to correct an IM4 done the prior month. No notification was given and it took 6 months for my claim to be accepted and the US$ 5703 to be refunded.  
Resolution status note: On 30th July 2013, Zimbabwe Revenue Authority reported that the consignments were eventually cleared manually (i.e. outside the Asycuda System) and allowed under the COMESA Free Trade Area (FTA) at Rates of duty 0% as Zambia is party to the COMESA (FTA). ZIMRA would continue to clear such similar consignments manually until such time Kariba customs migrates from Asycuda ++ to Asycuda World and the clearance will be done in the system. The client will not be inconvenienced by the use of either of the two clearing systems.  
Products: 3403.11: Textile lubricant preparations and preparations of a kind used for the oil or grease treatment of leather, furskins or other material containing petroleum oil or bituminous mineral oil (excl. preparations containing, as basic constituents, >= 70% petroleu and 6403.40: Footwear, incorporating a protective metal toecap, with outer soles of rubber, plastics, leather or composition leather and uppers of leather (excl. sports footwear and orthopaedic footwear)  
NTB-000-582 2.6. Additional taxes and other charges 2013-03-18 Zimbabwe: Kariba Zimbabwe Resolved
2013-07-30
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Complaint: Customs charging duty on STR goods which are exempted from paying duty under the Comesa Simplified Trade Regime  
Resolution status note: On 30 July 2013, Zimbabwe Focal point confirmed ZIMRA report that Zimbabwe does not charge customs duty on goods that qualify under STR if the goods have been properly declared as per the requirement. It should however be taken into cognizance that Import Value Added Tax (VAT) at a rate of 15% is payable. Also where the importer does not have a Tax Clearance Certificate (ITF 263) Presumptive Tax at a rate of 10% of the Value of the goods being imported is payable. Clearance under STR is limited to a consignment of us$1000. If the consignment exceeds the US$1000 duty is paid on the excess
List of goods which qualify under STR are displayed at the respective Border Posts. Furthermore TIDOs are placed at the respective Border Posts to assist persons importing such goods understand the clearance procedures.
 
Products: 5402.11: High-tenacity filament yarn of aramids (excl. sewing thread and yarn put up for retail sale)  
NTB-000-580 8.5. Infrastructure (Air, Port, Rail, Road, Border Posts,) 2013-04-17 Rwanda: Rusumo Rwanda Resolved
2014-07-02
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Complaint: Lack of parking facilities at Rusumo Border Post is creating congestion and clearance delays.  
Resolution status note: On 03 July 2014 FESARTA reported that there were initiatives to improve this border post and so the NTB is resolved.  
NTB-000-578 2.10. Inadequate or unreasonable customs procedures and charges 2013-04-13 Zimbabwe: Kariba Zimbabwe Resolved
2013-06-12
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Complaint: Customs at kariba Border Post seized my goods: 12 off klorpoder 25 kg and 28 off micromatic plus all cleaning powders claiming that the prices on the invoice are not true. Invoice price for Micromatic was at $3 & $3.50 for klorpowder which are manufactured by Nemchem Zimbabwe .These prices can be verified with manufacturer, Contact Nemchem at + 263 774017418  
Resolution status note: On 12 June 2013, Zimbabwe Revenue Authority reported that, the goods were seized in accordance with the Zimbabwe Customs and Excise Act (Chapter 23:02) which provides that an officer may seize any goods which he has reasonable grounds for believing are liable to seizure. The Act empowers the Commissioner to either unconditionally or subject to such conditions, whether as to the payment of a fine, order the release of any such goods from seizure or declare them forfeited. The client is therefore advised to make the required representations for possible release of the seized goods and submit them to the office though which the goods were seized stating all the facts relating to the seizure. Any decisions made can be appealed against up to until they reach the Commissioner-Generals office or even the courts to ensure transparency  
NTB-000-577 2.6. Additional taxes and other charges 2013-04-12 Zimbabwe: Zimra Head Office Zimbabwe Resolved
2013-07-30
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Complaint: Customs and Excise (Surtax Tariff) Notice ,2012, Statutory Instrument 112 of 2012,

Customs has introduced surtax on almost most of the agricultural products on the STR list of Eligible products, instead of paying 10% as presumptive tax there are now required to additional tax 25% as surtax that will amount to 35% and those which are not agriculture products instead of paying 25% as vat and presumptave tax there is additional 25% that means they will pay 50%, this a barrier, this will disturb the spirit of STR and all efforts to formalise transactions, and inrease cases of smuggling and corruption ,can there be clarity from Customs/Zimra for this surtax
 
Resolution status note: On 01 June 2013, Zimbabwe Revenue Authority ( ZIMRA) reported that the introduction of surtax was not targeted at STR products as the surtax is also levied on importations of the same goods from other countries taking into consideration the terms of any trade arrangements or protocols that may exist between Zimbabwe and that trading partner or block. The On 30 July 2013, Zimbabwe Focal Point advised that the NTB be conisdered resolved by the confirmation from ZIMRA that the surtax was not discriminatory.  
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