How to import goods from China to Kenya

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If you are planning to import items for business with a big profit margin, diversify your business or to buy unique and affordable personal items, importing from china could be a clever idea. Below are steps to follow to import your goods safely from china to Kenya.

  1. IDENTIFY WHAT ITEM  YOU WANT TO IMPORT

If you are making a personal purchase. I am guessing you have already identified what you          want to import. Although for the ones who are starting up businesses or want to diversify their businesses, you have to make sure you have a clear understanding of what you are going to be doing before going into it. You have to know your market, know what people need and what product can give you maximum profit. You have to do a thorough research on the products you want to import. After you have identified the product, proceed and consult the customs office to make sure the products you are planning to import are acceptable under Kenyan laws.

  • IDENTIFY A GOOD SUPPLIER

To identify a good supplier I highly recommend sites like Alibaba and Aliexpress, they have an excellent database for Chinese manufactures. From Alibaba and Aliexpress you will identify many suppliers with different product categories.

You need to take precaution when you identify a supplier and be sure to check the supplier’s credentials to make sure you get the right products. To avoid scams and poor quality products supplied please follow the following precautions;

  • If it’s possible for you to get contacts of the Kenyans living in china, these might be helpful to check the quality of the products.
  • You can also ask the supplier to send you samples of the product. The samples are given for free but you will have to pay for the shipping fee.
  • You have to also at least source for suppliers that have been advertising their products in Alibaba for not less than 5years and be sure to check the reviews.
  • KNOW HOW MUCH YOU ARE WILLING TO SPEND [BUDGET]

For the entrepreneurs who are importing to resale, it’s crucial before you order for the product to be in touch with the mathematics. Apart from paying for the products, you have to pay for freight, clearing, duty fee, inspection fee etc.

A simple formula for determining how much you’re going to spend on the whole process is to multiply the manufacturers price with 1.6, the answer you get will be the total amount you will spend.

  • BEST SHIPPING COMPANIES FROM CHINA TO KENYA

I highly advice for you to get in touch with the following shipping companies in Kenya and enquire about their terms before completing the order.

  • African Salihiya Nairobi for affordable shipping from china to Kenya, the shipping fee is between 7dollars to 12 dollars per kilo.
  • You can also use freight, if you need the items as first as possible. It’s very quick and efficient but you have to be willing to part with a good sum of money, it’s very expensive.

SHIPPING AGENTS TO AVOID

Some of the shipping companies/agents are very expensive. You have to avoid the following shipping companies especially if the products are for resale.

  • DHL
  • FEDEX

Apart from them charging you a very high shipping fee, you may also incur other charges like NEMA charges which are quoted in Kenya import regulation.

  • MAKING PAYMENTS FOR THE PRODUCTS

When you are done with all the research you will want to pay for the products. If it is from alibaba and aliexpress you can pay via Paypal, you can create a free account and load it with Mpesa. they are other methods of payment to i.e.

  • Western union
  • Bank transfer
  • Credit card
  • Sino pay-you can download the app, with the app you will be able to transfer money from Mpesa to wechart china instantly.
  • HOW TO COMMUNICATE WITH THE SUPPLIERS

You will need to talk to the suppliers to build relationship and trust especially if you want the same products again. The following are ways to communicate with suppliers;

  • Alibaba chat
  • Wechat
  • Whatsapp
  • COLLECT YOUR PRODUCTS AT THE PORT

If you shipped your products by air, you will have to collect them from the nearest international airport. On the other hand if you chose delivery by sea, you will have to collect your products from the port of Mombasa.

You will be required to pay for the custom duties and inspection charges. But you can also seek for assistance of your clearing and forwarding agent at this juncture to speed up the process of clearing your products from the port.

  • IMPORTING FROM CHINA DO’S AND DONT’S
  • Make sure to ask for samples before buying especially if you are buying in bulk. Any genuine supplier will be willing to send samples.
  • Avoid using credit card at least for the first 6 months until you can trust your supplier. It is much safer to use paypal.
  • Don’t purchase counterfeit products, they may not pass customs.
  • If possible start with small amount of product.

1 COMMENT

  1. Ensure you have a genuine supplier and the means of payment needed.
    Indicate your perso Al information on the goods.
    Indicate the mode of importation
    Be aware of customs declaration

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