Agriculture

Kenya pumped $1bn into food import in H1 2018

Friday, 10 August 2018 18:07

(Ecofin Agency) - Between January and June this year, Kenya’s food import hit a half-year record, surpassing KSh100 billion for the first time, Businessdailyafrica reports.

Figures from the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) showed that the import bill stood at KSh108.51 billion ($1 billion), up 12.5% from H1 2017. Main imports include corn, wheat flour, rice and sugar.

This uptick reflects Kenya’s dependence on the international market for food supply mainly due to weakness in agricultural products’ processing. According to AfDB, 91% of the country’s agricultural exports are in raw or semi-processed form. Also, the sector faces a lack of irrigation facilities which makes it more vulnerable to climate fluctuations and increases imports. Let’s recall that agriculture accounts for nearly a third of Kenya's GDP.

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