Electronic Single Window System (ESWS) to boost trade in Nakuru

May 17, 2013
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Updated Thursday, May 16th 2013 at 15:57 GMT +3

By Ben Ahenda

NAKURU, KENYA: When the Electronic Single Window System(ESWS) is fully implemented in October by Kenya National Trade network Agency ( Kentrade), Nakuru County is expected to immensely benefit as a transit point of imported and exported goods to the Great Lakes Region.

The county, which is a respected consumer of imported goods, particularly fertilizers -used in the growth of its agricultural products -, is home to over a million people.

The County is great producer of pyrethrum in Molo, wheat in Mau Narok, tomatoes in Subukia, potatoes in Molo, Njoro and Subukia and the horticulture in Naivasha.

The subsistence crops grown in the county are maize, beans and peas.

The county is endowed with rich soils in its eleven constituencies and could soon become another food basket if the plans to develop it are anything to go by.

With the new constitutional dispensation which has given Counties autonomy to govern themselves, Nakuru is set to reap in terms of national and foreign exchange with the introduction of the Electronic Single Window System(ESWS).

The system, which should reduce the number of days required to clear imported and exported goods at the ports of Mombasa, Malaba and Namanga, would benefit Nakuru as a transit point in the East and Central Africa.

This would save Kenya more than Sh. 27 billion per annum in business.

Kenya National Trade Agency(KENTRADE) Chief Executive Officer Alex Kabuga said automation of these services would improve efficiency at the ports besides saving billions of dollars annually.

Kenya loses between 250-300 dollars in revenue at the Port of Mombasa annually due to inefficiencies, and delays in clearing goods.

Kabuga said they have to work effectively to make the Port of Mombasa competitive and beat emerging competitors like the Port of Dar Es Salaam.

“It is possible when the process of ESWS is effected in October and it would allow us to do business with the 47 Kenyan counties,” he said when Kentrade chief executives paid a courtesy call on Nakuru County Governor Kinuthia Mbugua in his office recently.

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