The OSBP Projects Director, Mr Theo Lyimo, told journalists at Holili in Kilimanjaro Region over the weekend that the system would reduce time for clearence of goods and passengers at Tanzania/Kenya border.
He said Trade Mark East Africa (TMEA) will finance ICT requirements of the OSBP, including wireless connectivity across the border and agencies, as well as provide computers and the required software.
Holili is now being modernised into the OSBP, meaning that traffic on each side of the border would stop at the entry point instead of both points on the border. “Upon its completion means a bus to Mombasa will not stop at Holili but only at Taveta where Tanzanian as well as Kenyan officials will carry out clearance formalities, while a truck or a bus from Mombasa to Tanzania will stop at Holili,” said Mr Lyimo.
At the OSBP, officials from both countries will be working together, hence reduce costs of cross border trade and support the government’s efforts to promote investments and exports. Mr Lyimo said although both countries have competent border officials, they will still require induction into the new environment of OSBP to be knowledgeable on the flow of the new traffic and rules of working together.
Its full operational after completion awaits signing of a bilateral agreement between the two governments. “The Holili OSBP is one of the four OSBPs in Tanzania that TMEA is funding. Others are Mutukula on the border with Uganda, Kabanga (Burundi) and Tunduma on the border with Zambia,” he said.
While Holili will be ready at the end of the year, Mutukula and Taveta are expected to be completed by 2013. The Minister for East African Cooperation, Mr Samuel Sitta and his Kenyan counterpart recently held a meeting at Holili to discuss different issues on how to strengthen trade and relationship at the border