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The Ag. Assistant Commissioner Public and Corporate Affairs Edrine Mutebi

URA Urges Importers to Adopt New Warehousing Regulations

posted onJanuary 12, 2024

The Uganda Revenue Authority has clarified on the government directive restricting the warehousing of particular goods in customs-bonded warehouses. Addressing journalists at URA headquarters in Nakawa, the Ag. Assistant Commissioner Public and Corporate Affairs Edrine Mutebi said that URA is streamlining its warehousing regime to better facilitate trade and ensure improved tax compliance.

“URA is here to facilitate business, so our aim is to make sure that there is a continuous flow of goods without any disturbance. We want to streamline and improve our warehousing regime by removing some goods from the warehousing regime. Some of these goods take a long time to clear, others are locally produced here in Uganda and we are already in surplus. So, if anyone is importing, we believe that this person can pay at the port,” said Mutebi.

In April 2023, the Commissioner of Customs Department Abel Kagumire informed the public of the need to implement the government directive on the restriction of warehousing of wheat, mobile devices and phones, tiles, marble and granite of all kinds, lubricants, automotive batteries, toiletries and cosmetic products, spaghetti and pasta, and flavors for soft drinks, which were to stop being warehoused by June 1, 2023.

“Following a request by traders, the implementation was postponed until December 31, 2023. The importers claimed that some of their goods were in transit and that they needed time to prepare for the new change, which was granted by the URA,” Mutebi explained.

The Ag. ACPCA noted that the majority of the restricted goods are locally produced in Uganda, hence the need to protect the growth of domestic industries and promote import substitution.

He encouraged traders to adhere to what was agreed upon in May last year during URA’s engagement with importers since the government is always considerate and fair when coming up with such directives.

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