- The two countries have been locked in a trade dispute since December 2019, stemming from Kenya‘s decision to restrict milk imports from Uganda.
- Kenya has planned to visit Uganda to make sure all milk coming from there is produced by local farmers after claims the goods are being imported from third countries.
- Kenya wants to find out if Uganda has complied with the East African Community’s rules of origin for milk exports before resuming normal trade.
The World Bank has warned that the trade dispute between Kenya and Uganda could disrupt the smooth running of economic pacts within the East African Community.
The two countries have been locked in a trade dispute since December 2019, stemming from Kenya’s decision to restrict milk imports from Uganda.
The World Bank notes that this dispute does not bode well with the recently established African Continental Free Trade Area, pointing out that failure to find a lasting solution to this restrictive non-tariff barrier is likely to derail any major private investment in the dairy sector within the next few years.
“Such disputes within the EAC, an established and relatively successful economic bloc hailed as one of the most successful on the continent, risk jeopardizing all other trade deals within the community,” the World Bank said in its 2021 country diagnostic report.
Kenya has planned to visit Uganda to ensure all milk coming from there is produced by local farmers after claims the commodity is imported as powder from third countries and reconstituted before being exported to Kenya will.
Kenya wants to find out if Uganda has complied with the East African Community’s rules of origin for milk exports before resuming normal trade.
Livestock Secretary Harry Kimtai said they are waiting for the Department of Commerce to give a date on when they can visit Uganda for the trade mission.
The meeting was postponed four times in the past year.
Bilateral talks in December discussed and resolved trade issues related to poultry, eggs, sugar and fish.
According to the World Bank, Uganda is home to the seventh largest cattle in sub-Saharan Africa, between 13 and 15 million – of which about a third are raised specifically for milk production – and ranks Uganda in the top 25 of all countries in 2021.