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Kenya lifts ban on Uganda’s poultry products after Nairobi trade talks

Poultry farmers in Uganda have been counting unimaginable losses after Kampala’s biggest regional trading partner, Kenya haf banned all poultry products from their market under unclear circumstances (PHOTO /Courtesy)

Kenya has agreed to lift the ban on imports of poultry and poultry products from Uganda imposed late this year, Agriculture Ministers of both countries have announced in a joint statement on Tuesday.

The lifting of the ban, a joint communique on the status of bilateral relations between Kenya and Uganda said, follows successful trade talks held in Nairobi, Kenya on Tuesday, December 21.

The Ugandan delegation was led by Frank Tumwebaze, the Minister of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries; while Peter Munya, Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Co operatives led the Kenyan side.

Ms. Betty Maina, the Cabinet Secretary for the Ministry of Industrialization, Trade and Enterprise Development also attended the meeting.

On trade in poultry and poultry products, both delegations agreed to immediately remove any administrative measures that have hitherto inhibited trade in poultry and poultry products.

Kenyan authorities had this year levied restrictions on the importation of poultry products from Uganda with an aim to protect her internal market interest following the prolonged impact of Covid-19 pandemic.

Uganda’s per egg consumption capita is 17 eggs per person per year, while the country exports more to Kenya, where the capita in Kenya is 55-60 eggs per person annually. Currently, Uganda produces 150,000 trays of eggs per day out of which 70 percent are exported to Kenya.

Kenyan poultry traders have been urging their government to lift the ban to allow high supply of products in the market.

Following the ban of imports from Uganda, prices of eggs per tray increased from Sh.300 to between Sh.350 and Sh.450.

Kenya imports poultry products from Uganda worth over Sh.50 million both through formal and informal channels.

A similar amount is also imported from South Africa, Israel and other sources.

Kenya has since 2019 locked horns with Uganda over the ban on Ugandan sugar and milk, maize, a breach of the Custom Union Protocol that established the East Africa Community single market, leading to a rise in the non-tariff barriers.

Meanwhile, both Ministers also took note of the circumstances surrounding the recent interception of fish in transit from Kenya to the Democratic Republic of Congo and agreed that the two countries need establish a team of key stakeholders including the Revenue and Fisheries Authorities to work out a transit mechanism for fish from Lake Turkana in Kenya to the Democratic Republic of Congo through Uganda.

Both countries also agreed to work jointly to address the challenges of harvesting immature fish in Lake Victoria.

A joint statement also indicated that both delegations took note of the persistence of domestic levies maintained by both countries in contravention of the EAC Customs Union Protocol.

“Both parties recalled their commitment to remove the levies during the April 2021 bilateral trade meeting in Kampala. The Ministers undertook to remove the levies immediately and in any case not later than 1st July, 2022,” the state noted.

The Ministers agreed to continue cooperating on matters relating to trade in sugar, including streamlining issuance of import permits.

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