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Government warns Kenyan businesspersons lamenting over cheap Uganda imports

Government warns Kenyan businesspersons lamenting over cheap Uganda imports adding that it will not encourage ineffectiveness.

Trade and Industrialisation Cabinet Secretary (CS) Moses Kuria has warned Kenyan traders lamenting over cheap Uganda and Tanzania imports.

Speaking during the Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM) Humanitarian Fundraising on Friday, October 28, Kuria advised Kenyan manufacturers and the private sector to work on their market competitiveness. 

Kuria lashed at Kenyan traders that Ruto’s government will not embrace ineffective traders at the expense of improving their production. 

said the government will not embrace ineffective traders. 

“How did we end up here when we started complaining that we are getting imports from Uganda, which are finishing our farmers? We have to stop this culture of complaining and look at our competitiveness. If you are not competitive, don’t expect mercy from the government of Kenya. The government can support you in any way, except if you are not competitive,” said Kuria. 

The Trade and Industrialisation CS stated that the manufacturing sector should ensure it raises its contribution to the GDP to 20%, up from 7% by the year 2030. 

“Manufacturing is your business, but it is our business as a government as well. Starting next week, I will have a meeting with each of your 14 sectors so that we can thoroughly analyze each by January 2023 to ensure competitiveness,” he said. 

Kuria’s comments come amid complaints from Kenyan businesspersons over uncontrolled cheap imports from Uganda.

Kenya’s sugar imports from Uganda increased in the months of August 2022 to a record 9,739 tonnes; 56% of the total sugar imports to the country, which stood at 17,590 tonnes of sugar. 

Uganda’s exports to Kenya during the same months stood at $64.67 million (KSh 7.8 billion) compared to previous months. 

 Kuria further urged the private sector to work closely with the government in realizing the economic development agenda. 

“We call upon the private sector to partner with the government through our public-private partnership programme. The era where the government could do everything is gone, and there is no shame or pretense about that,” he added. 

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