UNBS clarification on applying for Destination Inspection for Diplomatic cargo in transit

Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) has issued a clarification to UN agencies (diplomats) on applying for destination inspection of goods that are in transit to other countries.

“UN agencies transporting goods to S. Sudan and DRC raise an IM4, which subjects these goods to destination inspection, yet the goods are in transit to the two countries. This is wrong.’’ Said Andrew Othieno, the Manager of Imports inspection at UNBS.

He further clarified that only goods whose final destination is Uganda, are the ones subject to UNBS destination inspection, according to the UNBS Act and urged the UN agencies to raise a transit entry under the transit regime for goods whose destination is not Uganda.

The clarification was made during an engagement UNBS held with UN agencies; World Food Program (WFP), UNICEF, Eastern and Southern African Management Institute (ESAMI), Agha Khan Foundation and others, in Kampala on Monday.

During the meeting, it was clarified that;

  • Diplomatic cargo is exempted from Pre-export Verification of Conformity (PVoC) but MUST undergo Destination Inspection prior to the cargo’s release
  • For Destination Inspection, the Diplomats shall make an application for exemption from PVoC and it should be accompanied by a Diplomatic note from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  • The Diplomats should have a Bill of lading that clearly states the container number and that number should tally with the number on the Diplomatic note
  • The Diplomats should raise a Copy of the Single Administrative Document (IM4) and commodities on that IM4 should tally with what is on the diplomatic note and bill of lading
  • Under Destination inspection, goods are first subjected to physical inspection by a UNBS officer and in case of food products, the inspector shall ensure that they have a remaining shelf life of at least 75%. The permissible shelf life for other products with a definite shelf life is 50%
  • For goods with a value less than USD2000, payment of the PVoC Surcharge equivalent to 15% of the CIF value applies.

The Diplomats were also cautioned against dealing in substandard products, emphasizing that the substandard products will be seized on site or after laboratory testing (for parameters that can’t be seen with naked eyes) and cleared for destruction.

The Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) is a statutory body responsible for developing and promoting standards and quality of products and services to facilitate fair trade, promote local industries and protect consumers.