Deng calls on alumnae to venture in business

By Oyet Alfonse

The chairperson of South Sudan Clearing Agents and Freight Forwarders Association (SSCAFFA) is calling on grownup population whether graduates or nongraduates to venture in business sector rather than waiting employments from government.

Mr. Deng Daniel Ayuen was answering some queries solicited by No.1 Citizen Daily Newspaper on Wednesday.

What is South Sudan clearing agents and freight forwarders?

South Sudan Clearing agents and freight forwarders is a body registered with the government especially custom and national revenue authority. The association represent all clearing agents across the country.

All clearing agents and freight forwarder at the borders of South Sudan and even at Juba International Airport.

We actually operate mainly at the border of Nimule, Nadapal and Juba International Airport. But when the country normalizes and all other borders open, we can extend such business in those areas, such as borders of Democratic Republic of Congo and Ethiopia among others.

Why did you form this business association?

We have formed the association because of the increased number of personnel in the business.

Most member of clearing agents and freight forwarder started way back in 2005 after the comprehensive peace agreement (CPA); but such business was operating at the border of Kaya in around 2002 where there were exchange of good and services between Ugandan and Yei River County which was part under the control of liberation movement.

However, after CPA many southern boarders opened, and many goods started coming in to Juba from different parts of the border; such as Nimule, Nadapal including part of Ethiopia – South Sudan border.

What are the goals, missions and visions of the association?

One of our goals is to make the custom clearance standard, so that we compete with the regional bodies. The mission is that all the members have to be protected and be promoted in term of business.

Now we are looking toward 2023 to 2025, we are standardizing the clearance agencies and freight forwarder into a competitive and transparent organization.

What are the objectives of the association?

It is clear from above that the job of a clearing agent involves very specialised tasks and they are regulated by the country’s laws.

One of the objectives is protecting our members, those who are registered and licensed clearing companies, protecting them from government policies, failing to advance in business; the second one is also the transformation of custom clearance that we have to adopt the model ways of doing custom procedures, like currently NRA have to introduce the information system; so, we create awareness to our members by giving them information, take them through the custom procedures.

Our work is to submit data and written reports to the consignee regarding clearance and delivery of the delivery or package.

Our role is to prepare and submit the required customs documentation with the authorities for clearance of import and export goods.

What are some of the problem you people encounter in the business?

The freight and forwarder are an array subjected to rules, laws, fees, and regulations like custom authority and national revenue authority which have direct influence in the industry.

So, for us to pass the transformation objectives is tricky; you will find that other people who have influence on all the companies or government officials, can come and instruct us according to their understandings.

We have tried to engaged the authority of custom to give us space, because under the custom act of 2013, any acting government officials is not supposed to work for any clearing company.

We have engaged the authority of custom to eliminate some of the officials who has companies, and should not be given a license.

Some of these custom officials when they have clearing agents, they do charge customers differently in favor of his company.  This becomes an advantage for them.

How can clearing agents and freight forwarders transform government’s custom system?

One of the ways we transform the systems is that, we always follow government order information system on custom duties, like paying money in the digital system.

We can also transform by creating awareness, capacity buildings and improve our business at the standard of regional body, for example like the way Uganda and Kenya handles their custom clearance. So, it is the same transformation that we are trying to adopt in South Sudan.

Are you working alongside the government?

No, we are nongovernmental institution; but the only thing is that, we are being licensed by government under custom institution. So, this creates us space for doing businesses.

How, and why did you joint the business?

I personally grew up at the border, I saw it was one of the competitive businesses whereby if you have the capital and have access to traders, I think it is very easy for you to adopt.

I joined it because of the education purposes, I wanted to learn more about trades; most of the international traders

Do you have something to share with your colleagues, the youthful age?

You know most of these are influential but jobless, and are faced psychological problems.

I am appealing to my colleagues to do whatever work they can so that they earn a living.

And I also want to advise them that, once they get some little money, they should not misuse it, let them starts with business.

I know it is hard, even to get some money and set up small business, but always keep your vision; abruptly, one of your best friends in the college or at high school who managed to get job give you a little amount of money, and that will be the beginning of your life.

“You never know, you may be the leading broker for that particular product, then small by small you make a grate change not only to your family but also to your surroundings”.

How do you think this kind of business can benefit South Sudanese citizens?

The Freight Forwarder and the Clearing Agent are important role players in the importation and exportation of goods.

Usually, our work is confined to arranging transport and preparing documentations as an agent of importer or exporter.

We can also act as a transport specialist advising transporter on most cost efficient and best means of transport.

In addition, we actually act on behalf of the importer or exporter depending on arranges for the customs clearances of the imported goods.

We also determinee the correct harmonised tariff heading of the goods for customs duties, if applicable.

We also aassist with the clearing instruction to confirm that all information received from importer is accurate before submitted for customs clearance.

Clearing agents and freight forwarder will assist you with the necessary customs transactions.

“A Freight Forwarder will arrange for your goods to be transported from one country to another while a Clearing Agent will make sure that your goods are cleared with customs.”

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