The Kenyan Government Pre-export Verification of Conformity (PVoC) (PVoC) regulation waived for three months for medicine importations. The period is to allow all relevant agencies to streamline their import and conformity assessment procedures.
The Kenyan Bureau of Standards (KEBS) managing director said that the three-month period will not be permanent. He also said that the waiver is only issued for medicines. Furthermore, he stated that all other goods imported into the country will be subjected to PVoC Regulations.
The PVoC waiver comes days after pharmaceutical distributors protested the new waiver that subjects any goods coming into Kenya a pre-export inspection and verification. Importers and distributors of pharmaceutical products had threatened to increase the costs of medicines to compensate for the charges that come with the PVoC.
The chairman of the Kenya Pharmaceutical Distributors Association said he got a call about the PVoC regulation waiver, saying it is a positive development. However, the association still appeals to the government to entirely withdraw the PVoC for medical products. He said withdrawing the PVoC for medical products will allow distributors to get medicines into the country as fast as they are needed.
After the PVoC regulation waiver period
Following the three-month, the KEBS will require all medicines being imported to be tested before they are imported. Meaning every importer must have their goods inspected in the country of export and also get a PVoC issued.
Goods inspection will cost approximately Sh27,000 ($265), as well the process and can only be done at six companies appointed by the KEBS. The companies are Bureau Veritas, Cotecna, China Certification & Inspection (Group) Inspection Co. Ltd, Intertek International, SGS and QISJ. The companies will inspect, test, sample, seal the containers and issue the PVoC certificates.
Following the three-month waiver period, goods without the PVoC will not be allowed into Kenya. So the goods will be returned to the country of export. If at all any goods without the PVoC comes in, the importer will pay a fine 30 per cent of the value of the consignment.