Regulatory Practices and Logistics Service Delivery: A Case of Kenya’s Clearing and Forwarding Industry
The logistics service industry has in the recent past faced numerous challenges depicting that Kenya is hitherto to reap the full benefits of international commerce. The opportunities that have presented themselves in the form of improved infrastructure, e-commerce and regional integration are yet to be fully exploited. The prominence of efficiency in the logistics service industry is underscored by its role in manufacturing. Trade, particularly international trade, contributes significantly to access to raw materials, machinery and other factors of production necessary in manufacturing. For Kenya, enhancing manufacturing is a priority in the Big Four Agenda as well as the Vision 2030. The effectiveness and efficiency of the logistics services in Kenya has been an issue that all sub-sectors of the economy continue to grapple with. This study was set to determine the effect of self-regulation on logistics service delivery industry in Kenya; to assess the effect of stakeholder training on logistics service delivery industry in Kenya and to establish the effect of compliance with the code of conduct on logistics service delivery industry in Kenya. The study was conducted in Kenya‟s clearing and forwarding industry on a sample population of 950 staff. The study used descriptive research design. Research instruments was subjected for test of validity by use of pilot test, review and judgement from experts. The test-retest method was adopted to determine reliability. Use of semi-structured questionnaires was employed for data collection and analysis done through qualitative and quantitative means. Measures of percentages and frequencies analysis captured quantitative data. For qualitative data, thematic analysis was considered. Results demonstrated that the frequency of logistics service industry training is undertaken more than once annually. It was noted that a majority of respondents believed that lack of uniform regulations for all the government agencies causes delays in the logistics service industry. The findings further show that the regulatory framework in Kenya, not only fails to provide for the management of customs agents and freight forwarders, but also does not recognize logistics service as a separate industry. The study concludes that self-regulation and accreditation are sustainable models of regulation and best alternatives to revive and develop the industry because it will ease compliance enforcement and monitoring, enhance efficiency by minimizing clearance time and make it easier to deal with rogue agents. The study recommends the implementation of self-regulation and a defined frequency and quality of training of key stakeholders and agents in the logistics service industry in Kenya to keep them up to date and improve the know-how of its work force.