Kenya has imposed an indefinite ban on milk powder imports to cushion local processors and farmers from surplus production and low prices in anticipation of the long rains.
The rainy season is expected to improve fodder production and significantly boost local milk production – hence reducing the need for imports.
The Kenya Dairy Board said it would continue to monitor the production and demand dynamics of the commodity before lifting the ban.
The board has also suspended the issuance of import permits.
Although the move may earn farmers higher prices, it is likely to raise the price of milk powder.
The ban is seen to go against the East Africa Community (EAC) free-trade agreements on free movement of goods and services and the common market.
Uganda and Rwanda are the two leading African countries from which Kenya imports dairy products.
An unprecedented long drought in the region has resulted in the current high milk prices.
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