The Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) has issued a temporary directive requiring dealers of imported used motor vehicles to have their vehicles inspected at border destination inspection points.
This temporary measure is in place while UNBS finalizes the procurement process for pre-export verification of conformity (PVoC) service providers, as mandated by the Public Procurement and Disposal of Public Assets Act.
Importers are requested to ensure that all imported used cars between September 23 and November 1 undergo this inspection.
However, a fee of Shs500,000 per motor vehicle is applicable and should be paid to the Uganda Revenue Authority payment portal.
According to Ms. Sylvia Kirabo, the UNBS spokesperson, this step was taken to avoid inconveniencing business people and clients due to a delay in appointing PVoC service providers in the countries of origin.
Products that fail to meet the minimum health, safety, and performance standards specified in Ugandan standards will not be allowed into the country.
These non-compliant products may be seized for destruction or re-exportation at the importer’s expense.
UNBS, in line with the UNBS Act Cap 327 established in 1989, is responsible for inspecting and regulating the import process to ensure compliance with safety and quality standards.
Import inspections aim to protect the public’s health, safety, and environment by preventing the entry of dangerous or substandard products.
The PVoC program assesses products against compulsory Uganda standards in exporting countries to confirm compliance with applicable Uganda standards.
Products that meet these standards are issued a Certificate of Conformity (COC) that serves as a basis for clearance upon arrival in Uganda.
PVoC inspections for used motor vehicles are carried out in countries including South Africa, Singapore, the UK, the UAE, and Japan.
This applies primarily to goods with a free-on-board value exceeding $2,000 (Shs7.47 million), subject to mandatory standards and examined by inspectors in the exporting country.
Effective from November 2, 2023, all imported used motor vehicles originating from specified countries must undergo PVoC with UNBS-approved service providers before importation into Uganda.
In addition to inspection fees, importers failing to obtain PVoC certification will be subject to a 15 percent surcharge based on the cost, insurance, and freight (CIF) value. Inspectors may also collect product samples for laboratory analysis.