On August 27, the Daily Monitor reported that Kenya had cut Uganda’s sugar export quota by 79% from 90,000 metric tons annually to 18,923 metric tons.
The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Cooperative Permanent Secretary Geraldine Ssali says the article was a misrepresentation of facts.
According to her August 31 statement, the sugar trade between the two neighbors is governed by two regimes – the COMESA Kenya Sugar Safeguard, and the EAC/Bilateral trade.
After the April 2021 Uganda-Kenya Bilateral Ministerial meeting, Uganda’s annual sugar export quota to Kenya was increased from 55,000MT to 90,000MT, consisting of both regimes.
Ssali says the COMESA regime uses a formula adopted by the COMESA Council of Ministers, where a weight of 30% to “Intra-COMESA Sugar Trade” and 70% to surplus Sugar for each respective country are applied in context of the projected Kenya sugar deficit.
“The data used in application of the formula is from internationally accredited sources, notably the International Sugar Organization (ISO) and the COMESA,” she said.
So, as per the current arrangement, the sugar export quota available to Uganda in 2021 under the COMESA Kenya Sugar Safeguard window is 18,923.63MT and the balance of the 90,000MT annual quota (i.e., 71,076.37MT) is catered for under the EAC/Bilateral window.
The permanent secretary’s statement indicates that as at end of June 2021, Uganda had exported 31,256.95MT to Kenya, well above the 18,923.63MT that the Daily Monitor Story claims to be the new quota allocation after the 79% cut.
“Therefore, The Daily Monitor story only considered the quota available under the COMESA Kenya Sugar Safeguard window and left out the bilateral window,” reads the statement.
“Subsequently, there was a misrepresentation of facts. The public is urged to note the correct information as provided above, and disregard The Daily Monitor story. I also urge the media to always crosscheck facts with relevant Authorities before publishing information, especially information that can potentially have a negative impact of bilateral relations between Uganda and her partners.”