Archive for the ‘Shipping’ Category


Botswana Unified Revenue Service: http://www.burs.org.bw

If you want to learn more about customs duties and taxes on importing motor vehicles into Botswana, you can get loads of information from the Botswana Unified Revenue Service (BURS) website.

To see the tax rates of different motor vehicles, see this PDF file.

Although not related to this blog’s subject matter, it is worth mentioning that the site also offers an interesting feature – the Tax Calculator where you can conveniently compute your income tax, whether you are a resident or non-resident of the country.

Read Full Post »

Written by Miano Kihu

ms. Wambui Namu

Customs Commissioner Ms Rose Wambui Namu

November 5, 2008: Confusion is rife in the clearing and forwarding industry following varied interpretations of a notice issued by the customs commissioner, Ms Rose Wambui Namu, ordering clearing agents to move their activities out of the port.

Some agents said the notice had banned them from the port altogether and threatened to go to court, while others said it targeted only “busy bodies’’ hence it should not affect the basic mode of operation of the agents.

Not even Kenya International Freight and Warehousing Association (KIFWA) officials are united in their interpretation of the notice, thereby leaving their membership in deep confusion.

The notice, which was sent to clearing firms, says: “Following the directive given by the acting Finance minister when he visited the port, you are hereby informed that you should relocate your activities from the port with effect from October 31. Failure to comply will result to revocation of your licences. The managing director of the KPA is requested to withdraw all gate passes for companies that will breach this directive upon expiry of the deadline.”

Source: http://www.bdafrica.com

Read Full Post »

Which is a better way to ship your used car?

Is it always “pay low with RORO” and “ship faster with container?”  The most straightforward answer is – no.  Shipping by RORO is not always cheaper and shipping by container is not always faster, although they often are.  If that didn’t sound confusing at all, then here is the real score.

RORO row your boat

The RORO offers many advantages.  If you look at the process of loading and unloading the vehicles, the RORO method makes a lot of sense.  The vehicle is simply driven on and off the vessel.  Hence, roll on/roll off, RORO.  Indeed it is faster compared to containers in terms of loading and unloading time.

But what really matters is lead shipping time, the waiting period between paying for the vehicle and receiving it in your home port.  This is when the quirks of vessel availability, shipping schedules and shipping routes come into play. Unfortunately, there are not many RORO vessels plying long distance routes and their service frequency is way lesser than container ships.  Booking a space in a RORO vessel can be a very daunting task.

So, is RORO really cheaper?  Most of the time, yes.  RORO rates are fixed based on the vehicle’s size.  If you compare shipping, say a sedan in RORO and a sedan in a 20-foot container then RORO will come out cheaper.  But if you ship 3 or 4 vehicles together in a 40-foot container, the cost will be much lesser.  It is a very common practice for different customers with the same destination ports to share a container.

Thinking inside the box

Why do importer-dealers prefer shipping their inventories via containers?  Is it because they can receive their vehicles sooner or because they get to pay less by shipping 3 or 4 units in a 40-foot container?  The answer is yes and yes on both counts plus more.

Perhaps the greatest advantage of shipping your vehicle in a container is security as it ensures that your vehicle would not be dented and scratched during loading and unloading or knocked about during the sea voyage.  At the same time, sealed containers eliminate the risk of having your car stereo and other accessories stolen.  If you plan to ship spare parts with your vehicle, the only good option is by containers.

The wrap

The better way to ship your vehicle depends on several factors.  If you can book a space on a RORO; if you can find a vessel which can bring your vehicle from the port of origin all the way to your preferred final destination port; if you can’t share container space with other customers; if you can afford the risk of minor scratches and dents; and if your vehicle does not have a stereo or easily detachable accessories – use a RORO vessel.

Otherwise, use a container.

Read Full Post »