Sugar shortage occasioned by drought a recent crackdown of illegal sugar in Kenya has seen Ugandan traders sending as much sugar as they can to their eastern neighbours. The government worries that if this continues, prices of sugar in Uganda may rise. Hence, Uganda is considering whether to limit sugar exports to Kenya or enforce an outright ban to protect the local market.
“We are going to ensure that it is controlled because earlier on we had agreed that we export only 25,000 metric tonnes a year and now they have gone beyond that. So we have to stop this and ensure that they do not export much,” Mr David Kiiza, a senior industry officer at the ministry of trade, said on Wednesday, according to Business Daily.
As a result, Uganda’s trade ministry will today meet the country’s revenue authority (URA) to guide on the current sugar exports.
“Based on that stock, we will agree on whether to allow them to export or not. If there is more than enough, we shall allow them but we shall not allow more than 10,000 tonnes I think.
“If there is insufficient stock, we shall work with URA to stop the exports,” Mr Kiiza said.
The General Secretary of the Uganda Sugar Manufacturers Association Mr Wilberforce Mubiru said local producers can produce enough sugar for Uganda and Kenya but they will prioritize sufficiency in the local market.
“We have been exporting. We exported 30,900 metric tonnes in 2017 and 66,000 in 2016. If the sugar that is produced in Uganda is what traders are exporting, it could bring a shortage but if it is re-exported sugar then that is okay is,” Mubiru said.