NAIROBI, Kenya, Dec 7 – Kenya Bureau of Standards Managing Director Charles Ongwae has raised concerns over the increase of smuggling of goods into the country.
Ongwae says KEBS is set to roll out a campaign on the increase in a bid to mitigate smuggling and proliferation of counterfeit goods.
He urged firms importing goods to the country to follow the rule of the law.
Ongwae says products coming in Kenya must first be inspected at the country of origin and inspected on destination.
“Upon inspection and confirmation that the product meets specifications, we then issue an import standardization mark. We have issued instructions to all supermarkets not to stock imported products that do not have an import standardization mark,” he warned.
He was speaking at an event where over 30 India firms from the agro-processing sector seeking investment opportunities in the country.
India is the third largest producer of food in the world and the second largest producer of fruits in the world.
India’s agro exports to Kenya in the 2015/2016 financial year hit $50.7 million (Sh5bn) with the main products including rice, confectionery, vegetable seeds, poultry products among others.
“Kenya has a huge potential in agro processing. I am welcoming firms to set up factories here and get markets for over eight countries in the region that has a growing middle class,” Ongwae told India firms.
India exports of processed food products are currently at $8.5 billion (Sh850bn).
“India firms have increased their interests in the Kenyan market owing to the increasing trade ties between the two countries and this will accelerate after Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited the country earlier this year, signaling stronger ties,” said Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) General Manager S. S, Nayyar.