Local manufacturers and traders now want the Parliament to enact legislation that will protect their businesses from unfair trade practices by foreign investors.
The local manufacturers submitted to the national assembly trade, industry and cooperative committee that Kenya Bureau of Standards was allowing Chinese traders to flood Kenyan markets with cheap substandard products thereby crippling local industries.
The association of small and medium traders led by Kimani Ng’ang’a said local industries had been forced to closed down or lay off workers after foreigners started bringing in substandard products.
“Introduce a KB certificate, Kenyan Business certificate, to be issued to only Kenyan citizens. This way we shall lock out foreigners from bringing in substandard goods,” said Nyokabi, local trader.
Gichugu MP Robert Gichimu supporting the traders’ case said there was need to limit foreign investors to only manufacturing and warehousing.
“The traders have a case. We cannot allow foreigners to be present in the entire value chain of business. The should only open industries or warehouses here and let Kenyans be distributors, wholesalers, and retailers,” said Gichugu MP.
Starehe MP Amos Mwago submitted some foreigners were being allowed to bring in goods in Kenya without paying taxes.
” The business space for us has shrunk. The government must protect our business people,” submitted Starehe MP.
The trade committee chaired by James Gakuya expressed the need to regulate how foreign investors conduct business in the country
Chairperson James Gakuya indicated the committee will be engaging Kenya bureau of standards and Anti-counterfeit authority on how to protect local traders.
“We shall invite KEBs and ACA to why they are allowing this country be a dumpsite for counterfeits,” said the chairperson.