New PVoC program operations manual

  1.1 General Overview of the PVoC Program
  PVOC Program is a conformity assessment program applied to products at the respective exporting countries, to ensure their compliance with the applicable Kenyan Technical Regulations and Mandatory Standards or approved specifications.
  1.2 Legal Basis of the PVoC Program

PVOC program was started on 29th September 2005 by KEBS, through the publication of Legal Notice No. 78 of 15th July, 2005 by the Minister for Trade and Industry. The program is also fully compliant with the provisions of Article 5 of WTO TBT Agreement.

  1.3 Objectives of the program
  • To ensure quality of products, health and safety, and environmental protection for consumers
  • To facilitate trade by ensuring that compliant goods are given expedited clearance at the port of entry.
  • To safeguard the country from unfair trade practices and dumping of substandard goods by ensuring that imported products comply with the same requirements to which locally manufactured goods are subjected
  • To safeguard the country’s national security
  • To prevent deceptive trade practices
1.4 Operations of the Program
  • The program is operated by accredited third party inspections companies on behalf of KEBS.
  • The world is divided into nineteen (19) regions based on proximity and trade volumes. In addition, the program provides for multiple partners in majority of the regions to enhance efficiency. 
  • The basis of certification is Kenya standards or approved specifications
  • PVOC – Pre-Export Verification of Conformity to Standards
  • COC – Certificate of Conformity
  • COR- Certificate of Roadworthiness for Motor Vehicles
  • NCR- Non conformity Report
  • RFC- Request for Certification
  • IDF- Import Declaration Form
  • QMS- Quality Management System
  • PVOC Partners – KEBS - Appointed Inspection and Certification Companies.
  • PPB- Pharmacy and Poisons Board
  • PCPB- Pest Control Products Board
  • CA- Communications Authority of Kenya
  • KCAA- Kenya Civil Aviation Authority
  • DVS- Department of Veterinary Services
  • KEPHIS- Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service

3.1 Importers
Ensure their suppliers are conversant with import quality requirements specified in relevant Kenya Standards or approved specifications and that their consignments are accompanied with a Certificate of Conformity (CoC) from the appointed PVoC Agents.

3.2 Exporters
Ensure their products or goods meet the regulations and quality requirements of Kenya before shipment by carrying out tests based on relevant Kenya Standards or approved specifications and/or obtaining the necessary Certificate of Conformity (CoC) from the appointed PVoC Agents for all products subject to the PVoC program.

3.3  PVOC Partners
The four (4) inspection companies (PVoC Agents) namely; Messrs Bureau Veritas, China Certification and Inspection Group, Intertek International, and SGS have been contracted by KEBS to undertake PVoC activities. The role of these agents is to undertake conformity assessment activities in the country of origin for products being imported into Kenya. These activities include inspection, sampling, testing, sealing of full-load containers and issuance of certificates of conformity.

3.4  KEBS
Ensure that only quality goods gain entry into the country as provided for in the Standards Act Cap 496, Laws of Kenya and The Verification of Conformity to Kenya Standards of Imports Order, 2005 (Legal Notice No. 78 of 15th July 2005), thereby protecting consumer health and safety as well as environment in addition to promoting fair trade practices.

3.5  KRA
KRA’s mandate is Trade Facilitation, Border Security, Revenue Collection, Enforcement of prohibitions and restrictions. KRA will use the Certificate of Conformity as one of the reference document for cargo clearance.

In line with the Public Notice jointly issued by KEBS and KRA on 13th November, 2015, the requirement for inspection and issuance of Certificate of Conformity was expanded to cover ALL IMPORTS. These measures take effect for goods shipped from the country of supply/origin on or after 1st December 2015.
Goods already certified by KEBS under the Diamond Scheme shall be accepted based on the Diamond mark Certification
Goods manufactured within the EAC partner states shall be cleared in line with the provision of the EAC SQMT.


5.1 General Goods Inspection
Currently, KEBS has four (4) PVOC Partners for inspection with the contact details as shown below:

Bureau Veritas S.A
First Floor, ABC Place,
Waiyaki Way- Westlands
Phone: + 254 20 445 05 60/1/2/3/4
Fax: + 254 20 445 05 65

China Certification and Inspection Company Ltd
Ain Guest House,
Off Argwings Kodhek Road- Hurlinharm
P.O Box 21641 – 00100 NAIROBI
Phone: + 254 710 458752
Tel: +254-20-2720000
Email: /

Intertek Group Plc
House of Vanguard, 4th Floor,
P.O. Box 696-00621
Chiromo Road, Westlands,
Nairobi, Kenya
Tel: +254 20 4449132 / 3 / 6
Mobile: +254 736 715456 or +254 725744688
Fax: +254 (0)20 4449212

2nd Floor - North Wing,   Victoria Towers,
Kilimanjaro Road Upperhill,
P.O. Box 72118, 00200
Nairobi, Kenya
Tel: +254 20 272 7815 / 32 / 34
Mobile: +254 722 717771, + 254 733 777300
Fax: +254 20 273 3664

These agents have been allocated areas of operation in line with the table No. 2 below:
Table No. 2: PVoC Partners Regions of responsibility




Partners(s) Responsible


United Kingdom

1. Wales
2. Scotland

3. Ireland
4. England

Intertek, SGS, Bureau Veritas



1. China Mainland
2. Hong Kong

3. Taiwan
4. Mongolia

Intertek, SGS, Bureau Veritas, CCIC


Indian Subcontinent

1. India
2. Pakistan
3. Sri Lanka

4. Bangladesh
5. Afghanistan
6. Myanmar

Intertek, SGS, Bureau Veritas


Far East

1. Japan
2. Korea (South and North)
3. Indonesia
4. Malaysia
5. Philippines

6. Thailand
7. Singapore
8. Vietnam
9. Cambodia

SGS, Bureau Veritas


Australia, New Zealand and Polynesia Islands

1. Australia
2. New Zealand
3. Papua New Guinea

Intertek, SGS, Bureau Veritas


Central America and Caribbean

1. Mexico 
2. Guatemala 
3. El Salvador 
4. Honduras 
5. Nicaragua
6. Costa Rica
7. Panama

8. Venezuela
9. Colombia
10. Brazil
11. Ecuador
12. Peru
13. Bolivia
14. Paraguay

15. Uruguay
16. Argentina
17. Chile
18. Cuba
19. Jamaica
20. Guyana 
21.Dominican Republic

Intertek, SGS, Bureau Veritas



1. USA
2. Canada

Intertek, SGS, Bureau Veritas


Ex-Soviet Union Republics

1. Latvia
2. Estonia
3. Lithuania
4. Belarus
5. Ukraine 

6. Georgia 
7. Armenia 
8. Azerbaijan 
9. Turkmenistan 
10. Uzbekistan

11. Kazakhstan
12. Kyrgyzstan
13. Tajikistan
14. Russia
15. Turkistan

SGS, Bureau Veritas


Eastern Europe

1. Czech Republic
2. Slovakia
3. Romania
4. Hungary
5. Bosnia- Herzegovina

6. Serbia and Montenegro
7. Bulgaria
8. Macedonia
9. Albania
10. Poland

SGS, Bureau Veritas


Mediterranean Europe

1. Turkey
2. Greece
3. Spain

4. Portugal
5. Malta

SGS, Bureau Veritas


Central Europe

1. Italy
2. France
3. Switzerland
4. Belgium

5. Germany
6. Austria
7. Netherlands

SGS, Bureau Veritas


Nordic Countries

1. Norway
2. Sweden
3. Finland

4. Iceland
5. Denmark

Intertek, SGS, Bureau Veritas


Middle East

1. Iran
2. Iraq
3. Saudi Arabia
4. Oman

5. Jordan
6. Syria
7. Lebanon
8. Israel

9. Yemen
10. Bahrain
11. Qatar
12. Kuwait

Bureau Veritas



1. United Arab Emirates

Intertek, SGS, Bureau Veritas, CCIC


Maghreb Countries

1. Algeria
2. Morocco
3. Western Sahara

Bureau Veritas


North Africa

  1. Egypt
  2. Tunisia
  3. Libya
  4. Sudan
  1. South Sudan
  2. Chad
  3. Somalia
  4. Eritrea
  1. Ethiopia
  2. Djibouti



West Africa

  1. Mauritania
  2. Senegal
  3. Guinea
  4. Mali
  5. Burkina Faso
  6. Cote D’Ivoire
  1. Ghana
  2. Togo
  3. Nigeria
  4. Equatorial Guinea
  5. Niger
  1. Cameroon
  2. Gambia
  3. Liberia
  4. Guinea Bissau
  5. Sierra Leone

Intertek,  Bureau Veritas


Central Africa

  1. DRC
  2. Congo Brazzaville
  3. Angola
  1. Gabon
  2. Central Africa Republic

Bureau Veritas


Southern Africa

  1. Zambia
  2. Malawi
  3. Mozambique
  4. Madagascar
  1. Seychelles
  2. Namibia
  3. Lesotho
  4. South Africa
  1. Botswana
  2. Zimbabwe
  3. Swaziland
  4. Mauritius


5.2  Motor vehicle inspection
KEBS offers pre-export inspection of vehicles to determine conformity to the requirements of the KS 1515:2000 - Kenya Standard Code of Practice for Inspection of Road Vehicles through appointed inspection company in Japan, United Kingdom, United Arab Emirates and the Republic of South Africa.
KEBS has appointed Quality Inspection Services Japan Inc. to carry out inspection of used vehicles and new vehicles not sourced directly from manufacturers or franchise holders. The contact information is as given below.

M/s Quality Inspection Services Inc Japan
22-1608 Daikoku-Futo,
Tsurumi, Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan
Tel: +81-45-500-6033
Fax: +81-45-500-6034
It is a mandatory requirement that vehicles coming from the mentioned countries are subjected to inspection to demonstrate conformity to the standard before shipment and must be accompanied with CoRs.



The PVOC program has been designed to provide maximum flexibility to exporters and importers by providing three possible routes for obtaining the Certificate of Conformity. The route applied depends on the frequency of exporters’ shipments to Kenya and the level of compliance they are able to demonstrate initially when applying for certification.

6.1 Route A (Consignment inspection and Testing)
Under this Route, products to be shipped have to be both tested and physically inspected to demonstrate conformity to relevant standards. This route is open to all products being exported by either traders or manufacturers. 

6.2  Route B (Product Registration)
This route offers a fast track certification process for goods with reasonable and consistent levels of quality through registration of such products by the PVoC Agent. Product registration is recommended to Exporters having frequent shipments of homogenous products. The registration is valid for a period of one year. Shipments of registered products are exempted from mandatory testing and certification may be based on physical inspection only. However, random testing of registered product is still required to ensure product conformity throughout the registration period.
The following products are however not eligible for registration under Route B (i.e. are subject to certification under Route A only);

  • Sugar
  • Cereals and pulses such as Rice, wheat, beans, Maize etc.
  • Fertilizer
  • Animal and Fishery products (fresh and frozen- not further processed)
  • Dairy Products
  • Used or second hand goods.

6.3  Route C Product Licensing:
This route is open only to manufacturers who can demonstrate existence of a quality management system in their production/ manufacturing process. It involves auditing of such production processes and licensing of products manufactured thereof by authorized PVoC Agent(s) in line with ISO Guide 28: 2004. On successful conclusion of this process, the manufacturer will be presented with a License for the relevant products valid for a period of one (1) year. Licensed products shall be subject to random physical inspection by authorized PVoC Agent(s) prior issuance of Certificate of Conformity and subsequent shipping of the same. However, the PVoC Agent(s) shall carry out limited testing during the license valid period.
Note: The PVoC Agent(s) will review the Request for Certification (RFC) received from the exporter before determining the most appropriate certification route and the applicable standard to be used in the certification process.

6.4 Fees charged under the PVoC

  • Route A: 0.500% of the FOB Value min USD 250 max USD 2675
  • Route B: 0.450% of the FOB Value min USD 250 max USD 2675
  • Route C: 0.250% of the FOB Value min USD 250 max USD 2675   

The above fees cover documentary verification, physical inspection and sampling including sealing of the containers where applicable. The fees do not include: -

  • Laboratory testing
  • Manufacturer Licensing
  • Registration fees
  • Sampling of Bulk shipment
  • Re-inspection.
  • Sealing of containers

These services shall be charged directly by the contractor on a case by case basis.


Step 1:   The Exporter Shall Complete and Submit RFC Form
The exporter shall complete and submit RFC form (available on the website) to the respective PVoC Partner’s office together with the following information/documentation;

  • Product data sheet and/ or Product description (to specify the product’s intended use) –(Mandatory)
  • Copy of product technical specification from the manufacturer (if available)
  • Manual/ operating instructions (where applicable) The manual/instruction shall include English or Swahili translation
  • Production data (i.e. batch size/number, Name of manufacturer, date of manufacture/expiry, manufacturer’s certificates – where applicable)
  • Proforma/commercial invoice (mandatory)
  • Import Declaration Form (IDF) – (where applicable)
  • QMS Certificates (if available)
  • Distributorship/Dealership agreements - if available (only applicable to manufacturer-authorized distributors/ Dealers)
  • Test reports, third party certificates/approvals/Certification marks (if available)

      Note: Quality and completeness of the above mentioned documentation directly influences time and cost of processing of the order/ request.

Step 2:   Review of RFC and Documentation Submitted by Exporter by the PVoC Partner
The concerned PVoC Partner shall review the submitted documentation for completeness and to:

  • Establish the appropriate Kenya Standard and/ or international equivalent to be applied for the product
  • Establish product risk profile (for purposes of determining level of intervention)
  • Prepare inspection and testing instructions (where necessary)

Step 3:   Consignment Inspection by the Appointed Inspector
The inspection shall be carried out as per the instruction prepared in Step 2. The inspection shall focus on marking, packing, product’s shelf life (where applicable) and visual product conformity for reconciliation with the test report.
NOTE: Inspection shall be scheduled for a date not later than 4 days from receipt of the duly completed Request for Certification form and other relevant documentation from the exporter unless otherwise a different inspection date is requested by the exporter in writing.

Step 4:   Consignment Testing
Where applicable, testing shall be done against the applicable Kenya standard or approved specification. Testing shall only be performed on samples drawn by the concerned PVoC Agent in any of the following laboratories:

  • Any PVoC Partner’s Laboratory
  • An independent laboratory accredited to ISO/IEC 17025 worldwide
  • Any laboratory not accredited to ISO/IEC 17025 or the manufacturer’s laboratory under witnessing by PVoC Partner. (This option is only open in instances where the first two labs cannot be found within the locality)

Step 5:   Issuance of the Final Certification Documentation by the PVoC Partner
The PVoC Partner shall take a certification decision and issue certificate (i.e. Certificate of Conformity or Non Conformity Report) within 2 working days of receipt of the final Commercial invoice for sea shipment and one working day of receipt of the final commercial invoice for air freight


Wherever feasible, concerned PVoC agent shall witness stuffing of certified products into containers and seal the containers with their seals and indicate the seal numbers in CoCs. The cost of container sealing shall be borne separately by the applicant. Importers are advised that those consignments which have been sealed will be given express clearance at the port of entry and any sampling that might be required will be undertaken at the owner’s premises. This will ensure that sealed containers do not incur any additional verification related costs at the ports of entry.


Criteria for exemption of specific importers from PVoC requirements is as given in Annex 1
Other request for waivers shall be handled in accordance with the provisions of Legal Notice No. 78 of 15th July 2015.


  • Goods arriving at the port of entry with a certificate of conformity will be given an expedited clearance.
  • Copies of CoR and CoC may be submitted to both KEBS and KRA to facilitate cargo clearance at the Ports of Entry.

 Queries about the new inspection requirements should be addressed to KEBS through the following contact details

Email:; | Tel: +254 20 6948439/456






Importers of products regulated by other government agencies. Regulators: DVS, KDB, KEPHIS, PPB, PCPB, CA, KCAA

Proof of quality certification by the regulator(s)/ Import permits etc.

Concerned importers to submit Import permit or any other quality certification documentation to KRA for processing of customs entries/IDF

Registered manufacturers importing raw materials, machinery and spares for own use

  • Applicant must demonstrate quality track record for the raw materials and the final products as confirmed by KEBS
  • Proof of transformation of raw material (s) into a completely different product (finished product)
  • Proof of certification to a quality management system/ or professional practice.
  • Manufacturers to provide data on their customers e.g. complaints
  • Proof that the final products are directly linked to the raw materials being imported  

Concerned importers to apply to KEBS for registration using form in Annex 2

Diplomats and diplomatic missions


Completed PRO 1B to be submitted to KRA at the time of importation

Registered assemblers importing CKDs for motor vehicle and motor cycle assembly/ Manufacturing Under Bond (MUB)

Proof of registration as assembler/ MUB

Concerned importers to apply to KEBS for registration using form in Annex 2

Importers of courier parcels

Goods imported under KEBS/CIAK MoU

Goods to be subjected to destination inspection

Importers of printed matter and copyrighted digital materials

Textbooks, periodicals, diaries, labels, Recorded digital media, magnetic media

KRA to administer. KEBS does not have quality standards for copyrighted materials

Importers of goods certified by KEBS under Diamond Mark Scheme

Valid Diamond Mark permit

Concerned importers to apply to KEBS using form in Annex 3.

Importers of goods manufactured within East African Community (EAC)

Country of Origin must be an EAC member state

Import Entries for goods from EAC Partner states to be processed by KRA based on Country of supply


Importers of new vehicles

New vehicles must be imported directly from the manufacturer of the brands  or the manufacturer’s appointed agent

Clearance to be based on year of manufacture.


Importers of used personal effects

Goods must be pre-owned before shipment

KRA to administer


Importers of vehicles from countries where KEBS does not have a motor vehicle inspection arrangement

Country of exportation must be a country where KEBS does not have a motor vehicle inspection arrangement

Vehicles not from UAE, JAPAN, UK AND SOUTH AFRICA to be subjected to destination inspection


General consumables (stores) imported by International carriers  for inflight / ships services

Proof of existence as international carrier

Concerned importers to submit licenses to KRA for processing of their import entries


Re- imports

Submission of re-importation certificate (KRA)

Concerned importers to submit re-importation certificates to KRA at the time of importation.

Application Forms


Other KEBS websites

Contact us

  • Landline : (+ 254 20)6948000
  • Mobile :
    + 254722202137
  • + 254734600471
  • PVoC : + 254724255242
  • Email :
  • Fax : (+254 20) 6948575