Kenya Trade Network Agency (KenTrade) has launched the Africa e-trade platform to handle the exchange of commercial documents.
The platform has been in a pilot phase for about 18 months in Kenya, Morocco, Tunisia, Cameroon and Senegal, and will now be integrated in 22 countries, which are members of the African Alliance for Electronic Commerce (AAEC).
The platform will ease the cost of doing business and also help traders to exchange information on trade as the Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) takes shape.
"As per World Trade Organisation trade facilitation agreement, this platform will enable African countries to exchange commercial documents such as Certificate of Origin and the Phytosanitary Certificate, which will help accelerate and improve reliability of processing of trade documents," said KenTrade CEO Amos Wangora.
Speaking at the launch last week of three online trading platforms — AAEC, Africa E-Trade hub and the upgraded KenTrade's Trade Facilitation Platform (TFP) programme, Mr Wangora said Africa intra-trade will only succeed if member states adopt technology.
The new TFP will integrate all systems including the Kenya Revenue Authority’s Integrated Customs Management System (iCMS).
“The new platform shall serve as a single entry point and platform for any person involved in trade and transport to lodge documents electronically for processing and approval and facilitate the electronic payment for fees and levies,” said Mr Wangora.
KenTrade runs the online cargo clearing system (logistics coordination platform) which provides information to all the players on the real-time location of their cargo while on transit.