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Japanese car trading firm urges Kenyan Govt to review taxes with age-limit rule

Kenya imports over 90,000 units every year, with new cars at only 10 percent. /FILE

NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 14 – Japanese auto export company Be forward has called upon the Kenya Government to review taxes on customers importing vehicles following the plan to reduce the age limit of second-hand car imports from 8 years to 5 years.

Speaking while opening three new outlets in Kenya, Be Forward Kenya Sales Account Manager John Mutahi noted that this would enhance the quality of vehicles being imported, but emphasized that the quality and favorable pricing for the customer should be considered over the vehicle’s age limit.

“We have received information from the government of the intention to lower the age limit from 8 years to 5 years by July 2019. However taxes and duty need to be reviewed accordingly to cater for the mass market,” added Mutahi.

Be Forward announced A2Z Motors, Urban Drive Motors and Auto Biz Motors as the three new outlets under project ‘Tumefika Mashinani’ (we are in the grass-roots) in efforts to enhance its market presence in Kenya.

The outlets which are located in Ruiru, Kiambu and along Mombasa Road respectively will leverage the reputable agents to attract more customers and enhance service delivery.

The company which sells and exports used cars and auto-parts to over 152 different countries globally through its online site seeks to widen its customer and market base in Kenya by training and capacity building for potential partners.

 “Year on year, we have seen a growing demand for vehicles, possibly attributed to the increased road infrastructure development and middle-class status of the country,” said Takashi Noda from the firm’s Global Business Department.

“We are happy to partner with Be Forward as we offer free fuel, detailed cleaning and oil change as our value propositions to our customers. We are therefore able to deliver the vehicles to our customers’ doorsteps at no extra cost,” added Patrick Aswani, Managing Director, Auto Biz Limited.

Kenya’s motor vehicle industry is expected to grow in 2019 with companies such as Swedish brand, Volvo, French car maker, Peugeot and German-based car maker, Volkswagen having established local assembling in efforts to meet the growing motor demand in the country.

Member countries in the East Africa Community are in talks to shrink the age limit of used cars being imported by 2021.

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Kenya imports over 90,000 units every year, with new cars at only 10 percent.

The Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) is however yet to release the draft legal amendments lowering the age limit and raising allowable exhaust emission standards for all vehicle imports.

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