In progress

Introducing a risk-based pre-arrival customs process

Strengthening Kenya’s position as East Africa’s key trade hub

Get involved

Kenya is already a key regional trade hub in East Africa, acting as a gateway for imports and exports to neighbouring landlocked countries. Yet without an effective risk-based pre-arrival process, traders and customs officials face lengthy, burdensome and unpredictable formalities at borders. A formal, structured and systematic approach to risk management can change this.

What we are doing

We are working with the government and the private sector to introduce fully-automated, paperless processing which allow traders to supply information on goods and for customs officials to prioritise before shipments arrive at borders. It will significantly reduce the number of physical inspections for low-risk shipments, speeding up clearance and release of goods and creating a better business environment.

Our project involves:

  • assessing the supply chain in Kenya and analysing the import process
  • identifying best practice for pre-arrival and related processes
  • developing a target model for pre-arrival processing
  • supporting the legal and regulatory reforms required to implement the project
  • developing a risk process map and a detailed process description for pre-arrival processing
  • developing a training and HR development plan
  • providing training for customs and other government officials, as well as private sector stakeholders
  • testing and piloting the risk management system and pre-arrival process


The introduction of risk-based pre-arrival processing is a win for the government, the private sector, and the wider Kenyan population. It will:

  • expedite clearance and release of goods
  • increase predictability and reduce costs for traders and customs
  • improve risk assessment allowing customs to facilitate low-risk shipments and focus its resources on high risks
  • increase the balance between ensuring compliance and minimising disruption and cost to legitimate trade and the public
  • increase staff awareness about risk management

Monitoring and evaluation

We are monitoring and evaluating the project throughout its duration. Key indicators include:

  • percentage of all “green channel” shipments which are released upon arrival without inspection
  • percentage of shipments processed through the upgraded IT system
  • percentage of importers that are satisfied with the upgraded IT system for pre-arrival of manifest and declaration
  • percentage of surveyed importers that are satisfied with the e-payment system

Private sector support

In Kenya we are looking for businesses to get involved in a wide range of activities including:

  • advising on risk processes, best practice, legal and regulatory reforms
  • providing training and capacity building
  • supporting project management development and roll-out
  • promoting the project to stakeholders


The project will be implemented in three overlapping phases over 28 months, starting in 2018.

Phase 1


Analysis and planning

Phase 2

24 months

Design and development

Phase 3

13 months

Training and piloting

Get involved

Find out how to get involved in the wider Alliance by clicking the boxes to the right.

Contact us in Kenya