All goods imported through the port of Dar es Salaam and destined for inland container depots will have to be clearly labelled to check pilferage and loss of revenue.
Starting this month, all goods imported through the port of Dar es Salaam and destined for inland container depots will have to be clearly labelled to check pilferage and loss of revenue by the government. These are some of the new guidelines for importers issued by the Tanzania Revenue Authority in a move to make the port more efficient and user friendly.
Importers are also required to identify the final destination of their consignments and shipping lines are required to clearly show in the cargo manifest the destination as identified by the importers.
For cargo to be delivered at the port of Dar es Salaam, the manifest should indicate ?Port of Dar es Salaam? as destination. For cargo to be delivered at inland container depots, the manifest should indicate ?Port of Dar es Salaam/ICD (name of the depot)? as the destination.
Walid Juma, commissioner for Customs and Excise of TRA said that clearing of cargo at inland container depots will alleviate the problem of congestion at the port.
Mr Juma said the new guidelines are among other new on-the-shore goods transshipment procedures announced to all port users during a stakeholders" meeting organised by the committee looking into port decongestion at a meeting held on June 12.
?These guidelines are meant to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of the port in loading, offloading and delivery of cargo as one of Custom"s contribution towards trade facilitation,? he said.
According to Mr Juma, the transfer of containers from the port to the inland depots involved the risk of loss of revenue for the government and must be closely monitored.
Importers at the June meeting agreed to be enjoined as implementors of the new guidelines and procedures for smooth port operations for the good of trade and government revenue earnings.
Further guidelines were the approval of a memorandum of understanding by the Commissioner for Customs and Excise Department between appointed inland container depots operators, shipping lines and terminal operators addressing security-related matters affecting transfer of containers between the port and the depots.
Others were the clearance of cargo directly from the terminals due to container exit failures at the gates; storage and responsibility of such containers remaining in the port due to container exit failures; clearance of containers/cargo directly from the port for declarations accorded directly by Customs before containers are discharged and transferred to the depots.
New measures are the electronic submission of reports of all discharged containers per vessel to TRA by the terminal operators for all vessels whose consignments are to be transferred to ICDs.
The TRA said that containers destined for an inland container depot or to any place outside the port for clearance shall be secured only through an order executed by the depot operator to which such containers are destined and the container terminal operators.
TRA further said that where containers are transferred to a depot as a whole ship, the landing contractor or terminal operator shall be required to electronically submit ?container discharge list? to Customs manifest section and Customs wharf manager.
In cases where containers are cleared directly from the port, shipping lines shall submit form C11 to Customs for approval so as to amend the destination.
The approved copies of the C11 from shall be communicated to depot operators by the shipping agency so as to reconcile the discharge list with containers previously destined to the depot before the amendments took place.
Under the new conditions, containers transferred to inland container depots shall be stack in separate yards, away from empty containers for ease of physical container stock verification.
In the recent past, President Jakaya Kikwete was forced to intervene to ensure the port of Dar es Salaam was decongested after users complained of unnecessary delays, costing some of them in demurrage charges.