Millers in search of duty free maize imports

Millers in search of duty free maize imports
Maize plant [Photo: New Scientist]

Millers are now seeking the allowance of duty free wheat imports to contain a looming grain shortage in the country.

In a joint statement, the Cereal Millers Association of Kenya, Feeds Manufacturers and the Kenya Association of Manufacturers among others, say the waiver will help achieve equilibrium price between local farmers and consumers.

On the other hand, the coalition of sector stakeholders, want the government to form a Committee made up of key Cabinet Secretaries, including; Trade, Agriculture and the Treasury, to expedite solutions to mitigate wheat and maize crises in the country.

The Russia-Ukraine conflict has been blamed for disrupting the wheat importation supply chain forcing players in the sector to turn to expensive imports from the US, Argentina, Australia and Canada.

The shortage of wheat has further been exacerbated by a total ban on imports from India.

Consumers are already struggling with increasing prices of commodities. The implementation of these recommendations will be crucial in mitigating rising costs of wheat and maize-based commodities, should the situation persist,” read part of the joint statement.

On maize imports, the millers want the government to negotiate with Zambia and Tanzania on the importation of six million bags of maize to ensure efficient and effective trade facilitation.

On their part, animal feed manufacturers want clearance for the duty free importation of animal feed raw material including soya beans from the European Union (EU).

Last week, the National Treasury cleared the importation of 540,000 tons of maize from outside the EAC to deal with the looming local shortages.

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