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Exporting to Africa requires a COC certificate for customs clearance

Exporting to Africa requires a COC certificate for customs clearance

What is an African COC certificate?

The abbreviation of Africa COC (Certificate of Conformity) is the product certificate for export to the Middle East and Africa.


In order to ensure the quality of imported products, prevent under-declaration of goods value from causing local tax revenue losses, prevent the entry of unsafe products that endanger national health and safety, and take environmental protection into consideration, some countries require importers and exporters to entrust a third party before shipment. Inspection and certification agencies inspect products and issue product certificates of conformity (COC certificates) to products that meet the standards of the importing country. The goods pass customs smoothly in the importing country, otherwise they will not be imported, involving multiple categories such as food, chemicals, textiles, electronics and machinery. 

Which countries in Africa require COC certification when exporting to Africa?

Many countries in the world have implemented and formulated mandatory regulations for imported goods. The certificates issued have slightly different names, but in fact they are similar. Just think of them as COC certificates.

For example, Nigeria (SONCAP), Kenya (PVOC), Tanzania (PVOC), Botswana (COC), Egypt (COI), Cote d'Ivoire (COC), Ghana (COC), Ethiopia (COC), Algeria (COC), Kuwait (COC) , Uganda (COC), Morocco (COC), etc.


What are the procedures for African COC certification?

1. Prepare relevant materials, including product test reports or certificates, proforma invoices, packing lists, power of attorney, etc. Depending on the exporting country, the required information may vary.

2. Submit the information to relevant inspection and certification agencies for review and make an appointment for inspection.

3. After passing the review, arrange inspection/supervision of installation. During this process, the inspector will randomly open several boxes to check the products inside, take photos and keep records, and prepare an inspection report to submit to the company for review.

4. Issue COC certificate. If rectification opinions are needed, the exporter must make rectifications before shipment; if there are no rectification opinions, the draft certificate will be issued to the exporter for verification, and the original will be issued if it is correct.

For frequently exported products, you can register the product and obtain a registration certificate, which is valid for one year. With this certificate, the product can be exempted from the step of product sampling testing when exporting, and only needs to be inspected before it can be shipped for export.


If manufacturers that meet the requirements for a long time can apply for product licenses, conduct product testing in accordance with international standards or African standards, and at the same time, the production companies also pass customs on-site audits and finally obtain licenses, then product exports do not require testing and inspection.

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