Kenya Returns Milk Worth Ksh.27 Million To Uganda in Deepening Row
By Virginia Mwangi / January 23, 2020 | 12:23 pm
Milk from Uganda estimated to be worth 27 million shillings has been returned to Uganda from Kenya by authorities in a simmering row that is likely to see Uganda revenge.
The milk that was being transported in 19 trucks was in form of powder as the UHT milk and has been returned to Uganda following orders from the Kenyan authorities as revealed through an internal memo by the Uganda Revenue Authority (URA).
The 19 Ugandan milk trucks according to the URA were directed to return to Uganda on varying dates while those that were allowed in were seized by Kenya.
The move to order the 19 trucks of Uganda powder milk back is likely to cause a trade war that is likely to cost both countries.
Uganda, in retaliation, in a memo seen by the Daily Monitor, is targeting a number of goods from Kenya including beverages, household items and construction materials such as roofing.
Dicksons Kateshumbwa, the URA commissioner for customs, told Daily Monitor in an interview that even though he has been able to engage his Kenyan counterpart Kevin Safari, he has been informed: “the matter is beyond customs.”
Lato milk products which are normally from Uganda are said to be seized in Kenya with local authorities not giving the Ugandan Government sufficient reasons for the seizure.
“You see the Kenya authorities have continued to seize our milk and unfortunately, we don’t know why this is happening,” Kateshumbwa said.
A Ugandan depot in Kisumu has also been shut down and nobody is being allowed access to the area with Emmanuel Mutahunga, the Ugandan Trade Ministry commissioner for external trade noting that the milk would be turned back.
“Kenyan authorities had informed Uganda that they were going to send back the milk,” Mutahunga said.
Mutahunga, however, noted that the matter between Kenya and Uganda had turned political and would hence require to be handled diplomatically.
This is not the first time Kenya and Uganda are engaging in trade conflicts with the fight over Migingo Island having sparked bad blood between the two.
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