Posted on September, 18, 2018 at 10:17 am
The permanent secretary in the ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Prof Adolph Mkenda, told The Citizen that the Kenyan government stopped the importation of rice from Tanzania over claims of standards and packaging. “We are seeking an explanation [on the ban],” said Prof Mkenda. “We are sure that these are negotiable issues and it is our best belief that they are resolvable.” Apart from rice, there are also other issues that the government of Tanzania is trying to sort out with its Kenyan counterpart
Dar es salaam. The government revealed on Saturday that Kenya has stopped the importation of rice from Tanzania in yet another sign of unending trade wars between the two largest economies in East Africa.
The permanent secretary in the ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Prof Adolf Mkenda, told The Citizen that the Kenyan government stopped the importation of rice from Tanzania over claims of standards and packaging. “We are seeking an explanation (on the ban),” said Prof Mkenda. “We are sure that these are negotiable issues and it is our best believe that they are resolvable.” Apart from rice there are also other issues that the government of Tanzania is trying to sort out with its Kenyan counterpart.
One is that which involves the15 Lorries carrying wheat flour which are stranded at the Namanga border post. The trucks where stopped to pass through the border following the decision buy Kenyan authority to ask owner to clear each lorry afresh.
This is despite the fact that the owner had already cleared 85 lorries, including those stuck at the border, which were bound various cities of Kenya.
The other issue according to Prof Mkenda is that involving the Bakhresa’s energy drink product which the Kenyan authorities overvalue them in contrast to the exact value indicated by the producer.
This has made the product to be unfairly taxed by the Kenyan taxman and cause unnecessary in inconveniences to the producer.
The PS also revealed that the government of Tanzania was aware of reports that consignment of beer from Tanzania have been confiscated in Kenya “ We have seen on social media platforms that the consignment of beer have been confiscated in Kenya but our High Commissioner in Kenya is working on the matter,” explained Prof Mkenda.
The aforesaid information surfaced amidst a meeting between Tanzania and Kenya which among other things doubling claims that a trade war between the two states was brewing.
Briefing the media on Thursday, Prof Mkenda and Kenyan High Commissioner to Tanzania Mr Dan Kazungu expressed the optimism that the solution would be found to some unresolved issues which affect a business between the two countries.
Prof Mkenda called upon traders from the two countries to be patient as they were striving to resolve the challenges which were hindering cross-border trade.
There has recently been a report that there is a ‘trade war’ between the two countries basing on their reports on incident perpetrated by the authorities from both sides.
In August, Kenya and Tanzania media reported that some Kenyan had blocked lorries from Tanzania from entering the country as they protested mistreatment of Kenyan traders.
However the claims were later dismissed by the Kenyan authorities.
Recently there have also been reports that Tanzania had ignored a deal that granted Kenyan made confectionery products like chocolate, ice cream, biscuits and sweets unrestricted entry to its market.
Tanzania blamed importation of confectionery goods from Kenya by claiming that some manufacturers used raw materials from countries which were not members of East African community.
However Prof Mkenda said that the row has been resolved.
The two countries have agreed that the goods will only be imported duty free if the manufacturers used in the local raw materials.
Source: The Citizen