40 Nairobi posho mills to process cheap unga

The government has identified 40 posho mills in Nairobi County to be allocated imported maize for processing.

Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Willy Bett said additional millers have been identified in Samburu and Turkana counties, where the packaged subsidized unga is unable to reach.

He said the move is aimed at ensuring that subsidised maize flour is easily accessible in all parts of the country.

He said they have identified the millers in the informal settlements where locals can be able to buy the cheap unga.

DEFICIT

“Because of the availability of maize, we are able to extend the distribution to the posho mills,” Mr Bett said during a briefing at his office on Tuesday.

Last month, the Agriculture Ministry launched a subsidy programme on the flour, Kenya’s staple food, meant to reduce price of a two-kilogramme packet from Sh160 to Sh90.

Since the importation of maize started, the commodity has been distributed to large millers for milling.

At the same time, the Zambian government has given Kenya direct access to agricultural products such as maize and sugar.

This means Kenya can now import maize from Zambia to bridge the deficit following poor harvest last year.

SPECIAL LANE

Mr Bett and his Zambian Agriculture Minister Dora Siliya on Tuesday signed bilateral trade agreements to effect the easy movement of agricultural commodities between the two states.

Mrs Siliya said her government has committed to dedicate a special lane on its roads to facilitate express clearance for maize and sugar exports to Kenya.

This follows the move by Tanzania to restrict movement of grains by closing its borders to protect its limited stocks.

She also confirmed the elimination of maize export ban imposed last year and the removal of the 10 per cent surtax on maize exports. The Zambian government has also shortened the processing of permits for imports from seven days to a day.

INSPECTION

On its part, the Kenyan government through the Kenya Bureau of Standards will carry out destination inspection on maize imports from the South African country on condition that the exporters adhere to the required moisture content and aflatoxin levels.

It has also waived duty on importation of maize, sugar and milk until the situation normalises.

“The removal of these bottlenecks will increase more agricultural trade between the two countries,” Mr Bett said.

The CS said the government targets to import about 100,000 tonnes of maize from Zambia.

The Zambian minister said her country has a surplus of 1.4 million tonnes of maize and 40,000 metric tonnes of sugar for import to Kenya.

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