One milestone many graduates from building and construction courses such as civil engineering, electrical engineering, construction management and the rest endeavour to one day register a construction company and begin building the world.
In Kenya, none of this can be done without passing through the National Construction Authority. NCA is a government body instituted in 2011 to regulate, streamline and build capacity in the construction industry in Kenya.
It is therefore responsible for all significant construction projects in the country. It does this by registering and maintaining a database of contractors in the country. As a result, the quality of construction projects is safeguarded and unqualified contractors are kept at bay.
Besides this, NCA is also mandated to provide training assurance to contractors and manual workers, register and mandate projects and renew contracts.
This guide aims at taking you through the process of NCA registration thus helping you achieve your biggest professional milestone yet as a professional in the construction industry. We’ll also find out how to register projects, renew licenses among other things
So now, how do you get NCA certified in Kenya, What can you do to become a contractor in Kenya?
Before we get to the process……
What are the requirements to register as a contractor?
Ensure you have each of the following items before proceeding to register with NCA
- National ID card or passport
- Coloured passport photograph.
- A certificate of incorporation issued by the Registrar of Companies having registered your company.
- A CR 12 Document
- Academic certificates from accredited training centres for qualified directors.
- Valid PIN, VAT and Tax compliance certificates from the KRA.
- Company’s bank account
- The registration fees which vary with the category you want, starting from Ksh 5,000.
For those seeking higher categories of NCA include the following
- Audited accounts and financial documents. If you don’t have any you will be awarded the lowest class; NCA1
- A membership certificate for the contractors association.
- A certified copy of a valid business license.
- For electrical engineering projects, include a valid certificate issued by the Energy Regulatory Commission.
- Certified copies that prove assets ownership.
Foreign contractors are required to meet a little more requirements
- Prove that they are in the country to undertake a particular project. They are thus issued permission to operate for a particular period.
- Must file an affidavit that they will not undertake any other project during that period.
- They must commit to transfer skills to locals
- Should also commit to subcontract not less than %30 of project value to local contractors
- Registration fee of $1000
Now that we have all the requirements in perspective, let dive in.
NCA online registration process
The online registration process is quite direct.
- Access NCA registration page
- Click on “Local Contractor Registration Portal” under the quick links section. For foreigners, go straight to the Foreign Contractor page and click on the Foreign Contractor Registration Portal
- Enter your national ID number or passport details to create your account.
- Log into your account
- Click on New Application and then select new contractor registration.
- Fill the form and upload all the necessary documents then submit
- An email with your charges and the mode of payment will be sent.
- Follow the instructions provided to submit your payments then input the payment details on the portal to confirm.
- Wait for your application to be reviewed; you’ll be informed when your NCA certificate is ready
If your application goes through successfully, then congratulations and all the best as you begin or continue with your construction journey. However, registration is not the only process you must undertake to operate as a contractor in Kenya.
First, you must ensure to register every project you undertake before anything. You are also required to renew your license annually to continue with your operations.
Failure to do any of this will attract huge penalties and risk of imprisonment. These processes are done to assure the quality of construction in the country.
But wait a minute!
What items are required to register a construction project?
- Approved architectural as well as structural designs.
- NEMA license for commercial projects.
- A summary of the page of bills of quantities.
- Developer’s KRA pin.
- Physical planning forms (PPA2).
- Certificates of NCA membership of all contractors and all subcontractors involved.
- Registration documents and numbers for Project consultants with their respective bodies.
Now, project registration which can be done either physically or online, and it’s free
NCA project registration physically
This process is especially popular among companies that operate close to NCA offices.
- Pick the accreditation form from NCA offices, Huduma Center or download it from the NCA website
- Fill the form as instructed.
- Submit a duly filled form accompanied by copies of the required documents
- Wait for your application to be reviewed. You will be informed once approved
- Pick NCA construction permit from their office.
NCA online project registration process
For companies who prefer conducting most of their work online, you can register a project using the NCA portal.
- Access NCA Website
- Go to Developers at the main menu and select Project Registration
- Under the quick links section, click on Project Registration Portal
- Log into your account. If you don’t have an account create one and log in.
- On the right side of the dashboard under Quick Links, Click on Register Construction Project
- Fill in the form which requires details including project profile, consultants’ information and contractors’ information.
- Upload digital copies of the required documents as earlier mentioned.
- Submit your application and wait for approval
- Once your application has been reviewed, you will be informed through Email and SMS pick your construction permit. Your project will also be listed among the approved projects on the NCA website
Now that your project has been approved, the only thing left to do is to get to work. However, you need to renew your license periodically to continue operating as a contractor in the country. As a practising contractor, you have to renew your license annually failure to which you are fined 3 times the renewal fee.
How to renew your NCA certificate
- Access NCA website: www.nca.go.ke
- Go to Contractors and select Renew your Practicing License
- Under the quick links section, select License Renewal Portal
- Log into your account with your ID number and Password. If you don’t have an account just register and log in.
- On the dashboard, click on Renewal of Practicing License under the Renewal tab
- Enter your Registration number then click on Load Licenses.
- Click on Proceed and submit information and upload documents required then submit
- An invoice will be sent through Email indicating the amount to be paid and modes of payment. You will also receive an SMS notifying you of the sent invoice. It’s much easier and faster to pay through MPesa to complete the process immediately
- Once you have paid and received the receipt, enter the transaction number and submit
- The NCA certificate and Annual Practicing License will be auto-generated
The annual costs of renewals and penalties for none renewal for contractors are grouped as follows
- NCA1 – Normal Cost: Ksh 30,000. Penalty: Ksh 90,000
- NCA2 – Normal Cost: Ksh 25,000. Penalty: Ksh 75,000
- NCA3 – Normal Cost: Ksh 20,000. Penalty: Ksh 60, 000
- NCA4 – Normal Cost: Ksh 15,000. Penalty: Ksh 45,000
- NCA5 – Normal Cost: Ksh 12,000. Penalty: Ksh 36,000
- NCA6 – Normal Cost: Ksh 10,000. Penalty: Ksh 30,000
- NCA7 – Normal Cost: Ksh 5,000. Penalty: Ksh 15,000
- NCA8 – Normal Cost: Ksh 2,500. Penalty: Ksh 10,000
- All Foreign Contractors – Normal Cost: USD 1,500. Penalty: USD 4,500
In case you encounter any problems during any of these processes, contact NCA customer care offices for help using the following contacts