Kenya Tea Board automates systems
TradeMark East Africa (TMEA) has partnered with the Tea Board of Kenya (TBK) to develop and design an online web portal and a Management Information System (MIS) that will help automate TBK’s business processes. TMEA says this is expected to significantly improve application and issuance of licenses, certificates and permits for stakeholders in the tea industry.
TBK is responsible for regulating and promoting the tea industry as well as facilitating research into all aspects of tea growing, manufacture and pest and disease control. It is also mandated to oversee the smooth running of the tea industry through policy guidance, licensing, registration and trade development.
The tea industry stakeholders include tea growers, manufacturers, management agents, tea buyers, packers, brokers, warehousemen, exporters, importers and the auction organiser.
“The TBK web portal will aid in the sensitization of the tea traders on TBK requirements, regulations and procedures for tea trade and offer online application for licensing and permits; thereby improving trader compliance and reducing the time it takes to apply and issue trade documents,” said TradeMark East Africa’s Kenya Country Director, Jason Kapkirwok.
Sicily Kariuki, Managing Director, Tea Board of Kenya said: “the completion of the project will see drastic reduction of turn-around time in service delivery and enhance the capacity of TBK to discharge its mandate of promotion and regulation of the Kenya tea industry for the benefit of all actors in the value chain.”
The system, being built at a cost of around Sh12 million, will eliminate the manual paper work involved in managing TBK’s one million clients, including 600,000 growers, 106 factories and s marketing chain.
TMEA is providing business process automation and web-based portals to various trade facilitation agencies to allow for easier access to standardised trade information and documents, improved and consistent application of trade regulations by trade facilitation agency staff, increased compliance rates by traders and increased transparency and accountability in import and export trade operations.
These solutions also enable government agencies and the private sector to participate in the eventual national and regional electronic Single Window Information for Trade (SWIFT) that will reduce time and costs for traders and trade facilitation agencies in the East African region. SWIFT is a trade facilitation concept whose implementation allows cross-border traders to access, apply for and submit regulatory documents at a single location.
This initiative is expected to raise the level of awareness of the current and potential members of the tea trade fraternity on the regulations and procedures. In the long term, it will assist in reducing delays of cargo clearance due to inefficient and incorrect trade documentation or manual import/export procedures as well as increased transparency, accountability and competency in the tea industry.