Northern Corridor Authority Unveils Modern Information Portal

12th April 2022, Nairobi: Transport and transit information along the Northern Corridor is now available at a touch of a button following the launch of the Northern Corridor Transport Observatory Portal by the Northern Corridor Transit and Transport Coordination Authority (NCTTCA) today.

The automation of the portal will dramatically improve development and increase access of various metrics needed by policy makers to facilitate to better transit, trade facilitation and cooperation between NCTTFA Member States. It was funded by UKAID, USAID and Denmark through TradeMark Africa at a cost of US$ 1.15 million.

The Transport Observatory houses 48 key indicators grouped into six categories displaying; trade volumes and capacity, transit times and delays, transport costs and rates, efficiency and productivity, Green House Gas emissions and Intra-regional trade. Users will also be able to access newsletters and weekly performance trackers such as weekly, monthly, quarterly, bi-annual and annual reports and Green House Gas emission updates. Also available is the Geographic Information System (GIS) module that allows users to view the status of various infrastructure along the Northern Corridor including border posts and weigh bridges.

Prior to the now automated portal NCTTCA and policy makers relied on manual collection and verification of data that was costly and time consuming, resulting in delayed resolution of issues and publication of various reports. The system lacked modern features such as Geographic Information System (GIS) lowering the ability to easily filter information based on location.

Speaking at the launch event, NCTCCA Executive Secretary CPA Omae NYARANDI said,

“The NCTTCA Permanent Secretariat appreciates the partnership and support from TMA over the past decade. The increased importance of data-driven transport and trade facilitation necessitated the upgrade of the portal with support from TMA to include more functionalities and make it more informative, user friendly, dynamic, and interactive. Data from the Northern Corridor Transport Observatory has informed initiatives to address transport and logistical inefficiencies, ranging from infrastructure to systems and processes. The robust system will greatly support the commitment by the NCTTCA, to transform the Corridor into an efficient, smart and green corridor through continued advocacy for full automation of systems and processes, and interfacing systems, infrastructure developments and improvement, simplification of procedures and processes to reduce barriers to transport and trade, harmonization of transport and trade-related policies and infrastructure to ensure a resilient and developmental corridor and implementation of the green freight programme that seeks to make the Northern Corridor an environmentally safe development corridor.”

TMA Kenya Country Programme Director Ahmed Farah noted TMA’s support in development of online systems in various agencies as part of its contribution to the digitization agenda. He said , ‘’ I congratulate NCTTCA on this key milestone of launching the portal. With the new portal, it is expected that more data will be collected, and much better-quality and informative reports shall be generated to assist key stakeholders like policy makers, traders and investors in making timely decisions that shall positively affect the performance of the corridor.’’

The Northern Corridor Transport Observatory was set up in 2018 to support various efforts towards making the Transport Observatory Programme a success. Some of these efforts include: i) Upgrade of the server room for NCTTCA so that the observatory can run on more reliable infrastructure; ii) Enhancement of the transport observatory toolkit/portal to incorporate more modern features like a Business Intelligence Toolkit, an Enterprise Service Bus and an improved Geographic Information System; and iii) Support efforts in collection, analysis, processing and publishing of data on the performance of the corridor; iv) Development of a mobile application that will be used for collecting data from the field and uploading to the Observatory’s servers in real time. To date, over 180 publications have been made since 2018. Over this period, more than 115 issues facing traders along the corridor have been reported, among these, more than 80 have been resolved. The resolution of challenges has helped with reduction in cost and time of doing business along the Northern Corridor.

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