HUYE-Over 20 customs officers and agents from regional revenue authorities are attending a four-day training on customs valuation, Harmonised System classification and Intelligence analysis of goods, in order to enhance their capacities and capabilities in carrying out smooth and efficient customs procedures.
The trainees were drawn from the five member states of the East African Community (EAC): Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Burundi and Rwanda.
According to organizers, these are expected to train other revenue agents in their respective countries on the customs procedures in accordance with international standards.
The training was co-organised by Rwanda Revenue Authority (RRA) and regional revenue bodies in conjunction with Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).
Speaking at the function, yesterday, the RRA Deputy Commissioner General, Eugene Torero, urged the participants to take advantage of the training to enhance their skills in customs valuation.
Torero, who is also the Commissioner for Customs, noted that the training will help the regional revenue authorities harmonize their operations in respect with international standards.
“Revenue bodies need to know the real value of a product when collecting taxes. Today, one of the major challenges we are facing, is that of traders who sometimes forge invoices and bills in order to pay less taxes. So, we need to harmonize the customs valuation between the EAC countries to stop this,” Torero said.
Shinji Urakawa, the JICA Customs project Chief Advisor in the East Africa region, said that through such trainings, customs officers acquire skills in international customs standards and then train other officers in their respective countries.
He noted that such training facilitates the trade development between EAC members.
A similar training was organised in July and September 2010 in Nairobi, Kenya.