LOCAL manufacturers have decried the removal of duty on solar equipment arguing that the move will lead to an influx of imports at their expense.
Kenya Association of Manufacturers has said that while the budget was largely addressed most of their concerns, the removal of duty on solar-related equipment would render its members in that business uncompetitive.
In the budget statement read out on Thursday, National Treasury Cabinet secretary Henry Rotich removed import duty on machinery, spares and inputs for direct and exclusive use in the development of solar and wind energy.
This he said, would boost availability of adequate clean and safe energy in the country which is crucial for industrial development.
KAM has however supported the removal of bonds charged to importers of refined industrial sugar and wheat adding that the move will go a long way in reducing bottlenecks in clearance of white refined sugar.
"Kenya is a net importer of industrial sugar, which is a very critical raw material for sectors such as Food and Beverage sector and the Pharmaceutical sector. The removal of these bonds will reduce the cost and burden of sourcing for this raw material," said KAM's chief executive Betty Maina in a statement.
KAM has also lauded the raising of duty for imported iron and steel products to 25 per cent from 10 per cent, to cushion the local steel industries.