Freight companies to benefit with launch of regional electronic cargo tracking system (RECTS)

Shippers using the Northern corridor, which stretches from the port of Mombasa to the Kenya/Uganda Malaba border, now have an additional reason to smile with the launch of the Regional Electronic Cargo Tracking System (RECTS).

RECTS is a harmonized cargo tracking system that connects Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda by monitoring cargo movement for both the Kenya and transit markets transported within the regions. The RECTS system was launched on March 1, 2017 by the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) following a July 2014 directive by the Northern Corridor Head of State Summit that was held in Kigali.

Siginon Global Logistics, Divisional Manager, Job Kemboi said: “The RECTS system guarantees cargo safety and security as the cargo is transported within the East African region. The expectation is that the system will also act as a deterrent against highway theft”.

Kenyan transporters implemented the Electronic Cargo Tracking System (ECTS) in the year 2014 to monitor cargo movement while within the confines of the Kenya border.

The RECTS will expand the cargo monitoring scope to include Rwanda and Uganda.  It also presents 24/7 Central Monitoring Centres (CMC) in Nairobi, Kampala and Kigali with a view of the entire region.

A report by TradeMark East Africa, an East African not-for profit that supports the growth of trade – both regional and international – in East Africa, states: “The new system replaces the existing Electronic Cargo Tracking System (ECTS) where monitoring is done independently through stand-alone platforms. This forced KRA officers to toggle between screens, therefore making the process very tedious and ripe for abuse. It also consists of 12 Rapid Response Units consisting of Customs and Police Officers along the Northern Corridor. The new system also comprises of smart gates and automatic number plate recognition at the port gates and borders. This eliminates manual data capture and reduces the dwell times at the borders and port gates.”

Transporters in Kenya have embraced various technologies to offer their customers with optimal and real time cargo tracking while in transit.

Kemboi adds: “In addition to the RECTS, Siginon Global Logistics has reinforced cargo security by implementing real time cargo tracking systems in all our trucks. The trackers monitor cargo movement from loading at the port of Mombasa and it is only disarmed once it is confirmed that the container seals are unbroken and trackers disarmed by our centrally located fleet office on arrival at the destination. The technology also tackles soft issues such as drive behavior while on the highways to ensure that safety is observed at all times”.

The fleet management systems monitor speed limits, harsh braking, vehicle idling as well as support route planning. These have greatly hindered the risk of transit cargo getting diverted into the local market contributing to dumping. This will therefore eradicate tax leakages and create a level playing field for importers and local industries. The fleet systems also manage transportation costs that arise such as fuel siphoning and vehicle wear and tear.

Siginon Global Logistics is part of the Siginon Group which has been providing logistics and transportation services for over 30 years. Key logistics services offered by the firm are: transportation (road/rail/air), warehousing, customs clearance, distribution, project cargo logistics with a customer base in East Africa and the Great Lakes region.

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