The newly upgraded inland container depot (ICD) at Embakasi has commenced operations with the standard gauge railway (SGR) ferrying cargo to and from the Mombasa port.
In a bid to encourage uptake of the facility, a three-month promotional period on freight charges has been announced by Kenya Railways Corporation and it shall be running up to 5th April, 2018. During this period, a shipper shall pay 50 per cent less of the normal freight charges.
The Kshs. 21 billion upgraded ICD now can handle about 450,000 units up from 180, 000 units and is expected to cut cargo clearance time to six hours and offer shippers a 14-day cargo retention free period.
An inter-agency working relationship between Kenya Maritime Authority, Kenya Revenue Authority, Kenya Ports Authority and Kenya Railways Corporation has been hatched to facilitate service delivery at the facility
Five additional scanners have been acquired at the ICD to minimize human intervention in cargo scanning processes. The scanners are integrated with the Integrated Scanner Command Centre in Times Tower to bridge on transparency and accountability.
To ensure security at the ICD for cargo, a 24-hour surveillance system has been set up and rubber-tired cranes acquired.
Weigh bridges have been constructed to handle the huge cargo expected at the facility.
To ease the movement of trucks around the facility , plans are underway to construct the three access roads to link the ICD to the southern by-pass at Ole-Sereni, another to link the ICD container to Thika Road through the Eastern By-pass while the last one shall link the ICD to the Industrial Area through Isuzu east Africa. Dry ports are seen as the defining solutions to the freight industry as the government has resolved to establish more in Naivasha, Eldoret and Kisumu.