Kenyan farmers protest discounted ‘Ugandan’ poultry

Friday March 20 2020

Kenyan poultry farmers have protested an influx of hugely discounted poultry imports from Uganda.

Kenyan poultry farmers have protested an influx of hugely discounted poultry imports from Uganda. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

NJIRAINI MUCHIRA
By NJIRAINI MUCHIRA
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Poultry farmers in Kenya want the government to impose taxes on products from Uganda to create a level playing field and protect the industry from dumping.

In December last year, Kenya protested levies charged on poultry products exported to Uganda, but no measures have been taken to address the uneven trade that is contrary to the principles of the East Africa Community Common Markets protocol.

In a letter addressed to Livestock Principal Secretary Harry Kimutai, the Kenya Poultry Breeders Association (KPBA) claims some of the are imports from the US and Turkey and repackaged in Uganda as the country of origin.

“We hereby urge the government to consider the plight of Kenyan farmers, employees and the economy as a whole by restricting chicken imports from Uganda, as this is going to destabilise the industry,” said KPBA chair Humphrey Mbugua.

Uganda has imposed a cumulative 25 per cent duty on Kenyan poultry products—18 per cent VAT, six per cent withholding tax and one per cent road levy. Export products from Uganda enter Kenya duty free.

Last June, Kenya lifted a ban on poultry products from Kampala.

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The ban was imposed following the outbreak of highly pathogenic avian influenza in January 2017, and saw Uganda retaliate by banning entry of Kenyan poultry products into the country.

KPBA says Ugandan producers are currently exporting about 30 tonnes of chicken into Kenya weekly, with only 10 per cent being in processed form.

Ministry of Agriculture data shows that Uganda exported 270 tonnes of processed chicken products into Kenya in quarter four of 2019, up from 250 tonnes in quarter three and 171.5 tonnes in quarter two.

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