Annual revenue collection at the Busia border has risen from Sh. 400 million in 2018 to Sh. 4 billion in 2021 following the establishment of a One Stop Border Post (OSBP) in the area.
The OSBP which was launched in 2018 has reduced turnaround time for travelers and cargo clearance at the same time sealed loopholes for revenue pilferation.
Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) Western Regional Coordinator Pamela Ahago said all government departments from Kenya and Uganda involved in the process have been brought together under one roof to hasten clearance.
This, she added, has seen the more than twenty clearance stops reduced to one enhancing efficiency in service delivery.
An ultra-modern drive through scanner, luggage scanners, detectors and CCTV surveillance installed at the border post, she added, has helped to ease flow of trucks at the same time net extra revenue which previously was being lost.
The facility, she added, was now clearing up to 2, 000 inbound and outbound vehicles daily owing to the various interventions put in place to enhance efficiency.
“The congestion we used to experience is now a thing of the past with all goods on transit cleared the same day thus boosting our revenue collection,” she said.
This, she added, was in line with KRA’s mandate to facilitate trade within the region adding that other projects were lined up to enhance efficiency at the border post even further.
The projects among them expansion of the Kisian-Busia road and installation of electric gates at the facility, she said, were expected to boost the capacity of the facility to net more revenue.
“The government has done a lot of work towards facilitating trade here and the larger Africa. As you know we are approaching Africa Continental Free Trade Area which we have to implement and this One Stop Border Post is expected to play a critical role,” Ahago said.
Speaking during a tour of the facility by journalists from the Western Region over the weekend, Ahago disclosed that dealing with the menace of contraband goods and counterfeits at the border remains a big challenge.
KRA, she added, was working closely with other government agencies among them the Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) and the Anti-Counterfeit Authority to tame the practice.
Besides Busia, One Stop Border Posts she said, have also been established at Malaba (Kenya-Uganda border) and Isebania (Kenya-Tanzania border) to enhance efficiency in cross border trade.
Busia OSBP Manager Joachim Mwawasi said the tendering for electric gates at the facility has been done adding that a contractor was expected on site in May to embark on the project.
The project to be completed in three months, he said will enhance free flow of vehicles and cargo at the border, further increasing efficiency.
“The gates will automatically detect the number plates of vehicles already cleared and open, reducing the time spent conducting the exercise manually,” he added.
The Expansion of Kisian-Busia road which is an East African project, he said was set to ease traffic congestion on the corridor to facilitate trade.
Besides enhancing trade, the border post, he added, has gone a long way in supporting the government’s big four agenda and cross border security.
“The rigorous screening makes sure that the security of people and goods entering the country is guaranteed,” he said.
The presence of various state agencies at the border post he added has safeguarded the quality of foodstuff and medicine getting into the country thus promoting the two pillars as envisioned in the big four agenda.
By Joseph Otieno and Chris Mahandara