Traders from Kenya and Uganda sign agreement to end barriers
Kenyan and Ugandan traders have signed a memorandum of understanding to help end ongoing disputes over non-tariff regulations.
In a joint statement, the two sides pledged to harmonize agricultural policies to reduce delays and bureaucracy in doing business.
“The signing of this memorandum today will enhance agricultural trade between Uganda and Kenya, improve the interdependence of agribusinesses in the two countries. The document will advance and update resolutions passed in September 2021 at a business symposium in Mombasa,” the joint statement read.
Trade associations, seen as most affected by non-tariff barriers (NTBs), say having common standards for safety, sanitation and the list of documents would help reduce unnecessary delays.
The traders intend to file their proposals with the respective export departments for acceptable standards.
At a business symposium in Mombasa last year, Ugandan High Commissioner to Kenya Wasswa Galiwango and Consulate General in Mombasa Paul Mukumbya promised to update the issues discussed to help build connections that increase business volumes. export to Kenya.
While signing the memorandum of understanding on Wednesday, Mukumbya said Uganda would benefit as it has a surplus of agricultural produce that needs a ready market.
“Both countries have made recommendations to improve the management of agricultural export quality standards as a priority and soon our milk, Lato, which has been banned in Kenya, will be on your shelves. We hope that the signing of this MoU will strengthen cooperation as we seek to better understand the vital role of agriculture and trade in the region,” Mr. Mukumbya said.
Speaker of the Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Mombasa, Mustafa Ramadhan has urged Uganda to take advantage of the streamlined transport system in Kenya such as the standard gauge railway and container depot inland in Naivasha to transport their products.