One of the leading cargo handling firms in Kenya has received an award from the World Customs Organisation for its role in boosting trade and its services to the customs community.
Transglobal Cargo Centre was handed the award by World Customs Organisation secretary general Kunio Mikuriya at events to mark International Customs Day, with the citation by Mr Mikuriya lauding it for "rendering exceptional service to the international customs community".
The firm, associated with billionaire businessman Peter Muthoka has shaken up the ground handling business at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport after it entered a partnership with World Flight Services (WFS), the leading ground handling company in the world.
The new partnership, Africa Flight Services (AFS), has dramatically changed the ground handling market dynamics at JKIA.
AFS recently won the contract to handle the latest airline entrant to the Kenyan market -- China Southern Airlines -- challenging the previous duopoly enjoyed by Kenya Airways and Swissport.
It also clinched a lucrative deal to handle Lufthansa's ground handling needs at JKIA.
Before the entrance of AFS, Kenya Airways and Swissport maintained a stranglehold of business at the airport but AFS has in recent months broken their dominance at the key hub.
In remarks to commemorate International Customs Day, the WCO secretary general said digitising activities at key custom entry points was a necessary step in securing cross-border trade from crime, including international terrorism.
"Under the slogan, 'Digital Customs Progressive Engagement', we, as a customs community, are signalling our aspiration to further develop digital solutions and services, making life easier for the trading community, other border agencies and customs officers." The World Customs Organisation is an association of 180 countries which seeks to facilitate trade by developing international conventions on issues such as commodity classification, valuation, rules of origin, collection of customs revenue, supply chain security and customs enforcement activities.