Government backs pre-shipment inspection programme

The Minister for Industry and Trade Hon. Dr. Abdallah Kigoda has backed Tanzania Bureau of Standards (TBS) to continue with the Pre-shipment Verification of Conformity to Standards (PVoC) programme while waiting for opinions regarding the system.

The Minister expressed the support recently when launching a new TBS office in the city centre, saying that he was still collecting views on the implementation of overseas goods inspection system as compared to Destination Inspection (DI) since there are mixed opinions on which system was more appropriate in dealing with sub-standard products in the country.

“Although PVoC has so far proved effective in other countries like Kenya, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Ghana, Burkina Faso, Zambia, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Pakistan and Bangladesh, still we need to weigh out on how effective it can be for Tanzania,”  said Dr. Kigoda.

Regarding the new office, Dr. Kigoda said it will reduce bureaucracy that importers and other business partners are experiencing in the course of bringing and clearing goods from overseas. However, Dr. Kigoda challenged TBS to make sure that its establishment is strong enough to firmly undertake its functions, insisting it is high time the outcry of substandard products comes to an end.

Dr Kigoda further challenged TBS to carry out sustainable surveillances and inspections in shops and markets and take action as soon as substandard products are found as this will bring about fair competition and promote trade.

Moreover, Dr. Kigoda said the government will start allocating funds for development expenditure to TBS to ensure sustainability of its operations including opening offices at all border posts countrywide.

Following the move, Dr. Kigoda said TBS will be able to open zonal offices in Mwanza, Arusha and Mbeya which will bring services closer to customers and people at large, adding, “You have to work very hard to meet government expectations on its objectives”, he insisted.

On his part, the TBS Acting Director General, Mr. Leandri Kinabo said since its establishment more than 35 year ago, TBS has shown an outstanding performance locally and internationally. He assured the minister that his organization will overcome all the challenges that are currently facing it.

The new TBS offices located at Samora House, 4th Floor along Samora Avenue in Dar es Salaam are for imports certification services which include PVoC services, used imported vehicles inspection services, border entry points inspection services, wet cargo inspection services and general destination inspection services.