DRC and Zambia commit to clearing Kasumbalesa backup
9 Apr 2019 - by Chanté Ho Hip
Effective immediately, the Zambian Revenue Authority and its counterparts from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) have undertaken to start clearing 600-700 trucks daily from the heavily congested Kasumbalesa Copper Belt crossing between the two countries.
Robbie Forbes of Transcom Services, the Germiston-based company responsible for issuing clearing certificates for road hauliers travelling to the DRC, believes that if an average of 420 trucks are cleared per day, the backlog should be sorted out within two weeks.
Meanwhile 1 000 trucks are stuck at the border, one of the busiest and most chaotic over-border transit points in the Southern African Development Community.
Yesterday FTW Online reported a 72km-long queue of trucks waiting bumper-to-bumper along the T3 road linking Zambia and the DRC.
A source has since told FTW that officials from Zambia and the DRC are set to meet with customs officials and clearing agents to present possible solutions.
One of the suggestions is the appointment of a customs officer to identify trucks that have the necessary documentation to ensure quicker clearance.
In the meantime it’s been reported that the DRC has removed roadblocks that have added to the backup and have placed officers on patrol to improve security.
In a bid to solve matters on their side, Zambian authorities have extended border operating hours from 18h00 to 20h00.
Commenting on the delays at Kasumbalesa, Forbes said: “There is no single factor that has brought about this situation but a combination of adverse circumstances.”