Uganda taxman rolls out trade facilitation programmes to ease cost of doing business
The Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) has launched three customs trade facilitation programmes that will improve the ease of doing business in Uganda and the East African Community, and also promote trade and investment.
The trade facilitation programmes funded by Trade Mark East Africa (TMEA) will be used to monitor transit cargo under customs control in Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda.
The Trade Mark East Africa funded URA innovation aims to ease trade facilitation through a centralized Document Processing Centre (DPC), Introduction of a Regional Electronic Cargo Tracking System (RECTS) and accreditation of new Authorized Economic Operators (AEOS).
Minister of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives Amelia Kyambadde joined by Evelyn Anite the State Minister of Finance for Investment and Privatization, launched the services at the URA headquarters in Nakawa, Kampala on Friday.
They were joined by URA Commissioner General Doris Akol, World Customs Organisaition Director Compliance Anna Brigette and officials of Trade Mark East Africa (TMEA), a not-for profit established to support the growth of regional and international trade in East Africa.
"Our dream of being the model tax body is starting to bear fruits. RECTS and other innovations ensure better trade facilitation," said URA's Akol at the launch. RECTS is a web-based integrated system that will be used to monitor transit cargo under customs control in Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda.
Previously, each country operated a separate national cargo tracking system. According to officials, this posed challenges like lack of complete transit monitoring mechanisms leading to cases of dumping, delayed bond cancellation and refund processing and poor information exchange.