By Our Reporter

The Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) is now implementing the new Imports Inspection and clearance regulation 2021, following the phasing out of the Imports Inspection and Clearance regulation2018, to further facilitate trade.

This was revealed during the UNBS stakeholder engagement with importers and clearing agents in Malaba and Busia, held to further sensitize the stakeholders about the new imports Inspection and Clearance regulation 2021.

In line with the UNBS Mandate of enforcing standards in protection of public health and safety and the environment against dangerous and sub-standard products, the Imports Inspection and clearance regulation requires that;

A person shall not import into or export from Uganda, any commodity for which a compulsory standard specification has been declared by the bureau, where the commodity does not meet the requirements of the compulsory standard specification.

The commodities shall, prior to being imported into Uganda, be subjected to Pre -export Verification of Conformity (PVoC) to Standards, in the country of origin or export up on payment of the required fees stated in the regulations.

The products shall be accompanied with a Certificate of Conformity (CoC) or certificate of Road worthiness (CRW). The certificate of road worthiness shall be valid for nine months from the date of issue for each customs entry

Commodities that are not accompanied by a certificate of conformity or a certificate of road worthiness, the commodities shall be subjected to destination inspection.

An importer shall not place any commodity on the market for which a compulsory standard specification has been declared, unless the commodity bears the distinctive mark and /or a digital conformity mark.

While the phased out regulation of 2018 listed eight (8) categories of commodities exempted from PVoC, the new regulation of 2021 lists six more categories of commodities exempted from PVoC, which brings the total number of exempted product categories to fourteen (14).

These include; Consignments of commodities profiled as low risk, consignments of imports by importers profiled as low risk and registered as authorised economic operators (AEO)


The new regulation also lists product categories exempted from Destination Inspection which was not the case with the previous regulation. These include;

Commodities whose Cost Insurance and Freight (CIF) value does not exceed US$ 1300 with the exception of food, baby products, sanitary pads, cosmetics, tungsten filament bulbs, electric cables, compact fluorescent lamps, portable socket outlets or extension sockets, flat irons, electric kettles, solar lanterns, energy saving bulbs, solar battery chargers, solar panels, electric plugs, water heaters, electric sockets, electric switches, electric blenders, shovels, garden hoes, pick axes, machetes and cement.

Raw materials and direct inputs in the manufacturing processing including packaging material imported for use in a manufacturing process and not for sale.

Industrial machinery and accessories, including spare parts brought in for a manufacturing process and not for re-sale.

Farm machinery, agro processing equipment, and spare parts not for resale.

Diplomatic cargo accompanied by a diplomatic note and which is clearly for personal or office use.

Personal effects of returning residents and expatriates.

Commodities manufactured in a Partner State of the East African Community with a valid certification permit and bearing a notified product certification mark.

Classified military, police, prisons and State House cargo.

Religious books and literature such as Bibles, Qurans and other related printed matter.

The new regulation also lists revised fees as;

Fees for destination inspection: 0.500% of Cost Insurance and Freight (CIF) value, but in any case not less than USD 235 and not more that USD 3,000 but shall not be applicable for consignments whose total cost in freight value is less than US$1300.

Fees for release under seal: US$ 100 or the equivalent in Uganda Shillings.

Fees for supervision of re-work: US$100 per day or the equivalent in Uganda Shillings.

Fees for factory inspection under the Pre-export Verification of Conformity Exemption program: US$

USD100 or the equivalent in Uganda Shillings. Fees for verification at owner’s premises: USD100 or the equivalent in Uganda Shillings.

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