|CAR importers are crossing their fingers hoping that units on board five vessels expected to separately dock at the port of Mombasa from tomorrow will beat the eight-year rule.
This is after the expiry of the deadline for used cars manufactured in 2008 from entering the Kenyan market on December 31, 2015.
This year, only motor vehicles whose year of first registration is from January 1, 2009 shall be allowed into the country, under the government’s policy that restricts importation of units that are more than eight years old from the year they were manufactured.
The five conventional vessels are Violet Ace expected to dock tomorrow, Violet Ace on January 7, Hojin (January 13) and, Otello and Morning Melody both expected on January 15.
The Car Importers Association of Kenya yesterday said it believes importers have beaten the deadline, where all units manufactured in 2008 units were to be shipped in by December 31.
CIAK chairman Peter Otieno could not confirm or deny if any of the units in the high seas fell short of the eight-year rule.
“I have just arrived in Mombasa hence will notify you tomorrow (today),” told the star in a text message.
Importers are also yet to confirm if there were any 2008 units on Glovis Sumit that docked at the port on Friday.
Any vehicle made in 2008 that arrived from last Friday risk being shipped back at importers' expense.
In 2014, more than 2,000 used motor vehicles registered in 2006 were locked out over the eight-year rule.
“We have always sensitised our people to make early shipment arrangements towards the end of the year to avoid any inconveniences. We believe we shall beat the deadlines,” Otieno had told the Star last week.
The Kenya Bureau of Standards has insisted that it will lock out cars that have exceeded the eight-year age limit.
“We will not allow any 2008 vehicle that came in after December 31. That vehicle is over age,” Kebs managing director Charles Ongwae said on phone.
Kenya imports an average 8,000 units per month mainly from Japan, UAE, UK, Singapore and South Africa. Japan dominates the Kenyan market with more than 80 per cent share.