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New Legal Framework for Freight Forwarding


On 23 December 2023, the new Legal Framework for Forwarding Activities came into force.


For more than three decades, freight forwarding was regulated by Decree no. 68/89 of 11 December. Since then, port activity in Angola has seen new developments and opportunities, and it is certain that proper regulation will improve the performance and impact that this sector has on the internationalisation of trade and the globalisation of the Angolan economy.


This new law defines the rules for access, exercise and supervision, expressly giving the Angolan Cargo and Logistics Certification Regulatory Entity the power to regulate freight forwarding activities.


The minimum share capital to carry out the activity is now the equivalent of Kwanzas to USD 10,000.00 for most companies, while for companies wishing to carry out the activity at higher levels (3PL to 5PL), such as carrying out operations involving all the activity of coordinating transport, distribution and delivery, contacting suppliers, as well as purchasing new products, the minimum share capital is the equivalent of Kwanzas to USD 30,000.00. This measure demonstrates the state's concern to ensure the financial capacity of freight forwarders.


Companies operating as freight forwarders must include the term "freight forwarder" in their name and, in addition to these activities, can only carry out others that are auxiliary or complementary to freight forwarding, including the storage and distribution of goods, the import of equipment and accessories for the respective transports and technical assistance for transport equipment.


It should be noted that the new law not only establishes the obligations and duties of freight forwarders more densely, but also establishes a special duty of communication of its own, whereby, in the event of significant corporate changes, such as changes in the members of management bodies, these must be communicated to the regulator within a maximum of 10 days and, in the case of the Technical Director, the appointment or change must not be made within 90 days of or prior to the date of renewal of the Freight Forwarder's Licence.

These rules are designed not only to ensure that the sector works better, but also to promote and control, through the regulator, the good practices and business conduct of companies in the sector.


Another aspect that deserves due attention is the requirements placed on the technical directors of freight forwarders, who are required to have the necessary knowledge to carry out the activity, which can be reflected in at least 5 years' experience in the logistics sector and whose competences must be verified by the regulatory body.


In addition to these points, the new law establishes its own system of infractions, in which administrative offences can result in fines ranging from Kz 308,000.00 to Kz 3,000,000.00, with the proceeds reverting 60% in favour of the Regulator and 40% in favour of the National Treasury.

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