Home Business Linturi seeks two-month duty free sugar importation

Linturi seeks two-month duty free sugar importation

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The Ministry of Agriculture is seeking a two-month duty-free sugar importation window extension to bridge the production deficit.

Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Mithika Linturi says importers did not meet the import quota allocation for last year owing to a global sugar shortage.

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The Agriculture and Food Authority authorised importation of sugar late last year to fill the then shortage after ordering millers to halt production over concerns of lack of mature cane.

In a gazette notice dated 9th August 2023, importers were allowed to ship in 290,000 metric tonnes and another dated 13th October 2023 allowed importation of 250,000 metric tonnes.

Linturi says only 135,054 of the approved sugar was shipped due to a global shortage and wants the National Treasury to extend the duty-free import window that is set to end on Saturday this week by two months to allow importers to source for the sweetener.

In the letter, Linturi says the annual local demand for table sugar averages 84,000 tonnes per month and the current local production cannot meet the demand, which could see Kenya facing a deficit of 162,000 tonnes.

To cover the shortfall, Kenya aims to produce 720,000 tonnes of table sugar between January and August 2024, to be met through local production and imports.





Benson Rioba
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