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Sweet news for consumers as sugar prices remain low

Consumers will continue enjoying reduced retail sugar prices for the next six months, thanks to adequate supplies from both imports and local production.

Solomon Odera, the Interim Head of the Sugar Directorate (formerly Kenya Sugar Board) confirmed that sugar supplies in the country have improved significantly ending situations of high prices like witnessed in the first half of this year.

“The current stocks both from imports and projected production will sustain the country up to end of March next year.The country will be able to run comfortably with a monthly consumption of 60,000 tonnes,” he said.

The country consumes 60,000 tonnes out of which 32,000 are supplied by local millers and the balance is realised through imports from the regional markets and other sources.

In Mid-May this year the government allowed importation of 100,000 tonnes of duty free sugar from sources even outside Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (Comesa) such as Brazil to help in taming extreme prices in the market.

The exemption ended on August 31 this year and sugar prices since then have eased from a high of about Sh200 per kg to between Sh120 and Sh130 currently in local supermarkets.

By the time government granted the duty free sugar importation in mid-May prices of a 2kg packet of table sugar stood at between Sh350 and Sh400 and equally the supplies are limited.

Currently, Odera said retail prices ought to be about Sh100 and Sh110 per kg owing to the sufficient supplies since August. “It is not reasonable for the traders to sell the commodity at more than Sh120 for a kg as the supply is not depressed like six months ago,” he added.

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