Maize Flour Prices to Drop After Munya's Directive

  • An image of maize flour
    A file photo of maize flour on display at a supermarket in Nairobi.
  • Agriculture Cabinet Secretary, Peter Munya, has assured Kenyans that the soaring maize flour prices will drop in the next few weeks following a raft of measures put in place by his ministry to cushion Kenyans against the high cost of living.

    Munya, while speaking at Namanga One Stop Border Point (OSBP) in Kajiado on Tuesday, June 28, issued a directive suspending taxes and levies on imported maize. 

    This, he said, would offer relief to consumers who have been grappling with hiked prices of one of the basic commodities in the country. 

    Traders have been selling the 2-kg packet of flour between Ksh200 and Ksh250.

    Agriculture CS Peter Munya addresses delegates at the National Miraa Scientific Conference held in Nairobi on Wednesday, October 27, 2021

    “This directive will take effect in the next two days once it has been published and gazetted by the government.

    “We (the government) are looking for ways of addressing the cost of maize which has affected every home in the country. Maize is the staple food in the country,” Munya stated, adding that he met a multi-agency team to deliberate on the decision. 

    The suspension, according to the CS, will last for three months as the government finds a long-lasting solution to the high cost of living

    Only authorised dealers will import duty-free maize during the 90-day period. 

    “We are tracking down individuals believed to have hoarded maize and they will be punished according to the law. 

    “Those unscrupulous agents should brace themselves for price reduction and should not complain nor find ways to circumvent our order,” Munya added. 

    He noted that the duty-free maize will curb the maize shortage in the country as millers gear towards importing maize as authorised by the National Treasury. 

    “We do so (suspend levies) as we wait for the other maize millers were authorised to import which is likely to arrive within this period.”

    In May, Treasury CS, Ukur Yatani, allowed the dealers to import the commodity on the condition that it does not contain any GMOs.

    “In consequence of the notification of an impending maize crisis in the country by the Cabinet Secretary for Agriculture, Livestock Fisheries and Co-operatives, a waiver of import duty has been granted for the importation of not more than 540,000 metric tonnes of white non-genetically-modified organism (GMO) maize grain.

    "The waiver of import duty shall apply to white non-GMO maize imported into Kenya on or before August 6, 2022," Yatani’s statement read in part.

    Maize silos and driers at the Eldoret National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) depot.
    Maize silos and driers at the Eldoret National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) depot.