Kenya: Miraa Trade With Somalia to Resume After New President Agrees to Lift Ban - Munya

Nairobi — There is hope for Kenya Miraa traders after Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya on Friday announced that the new Somali President Hassan Mohamud has agreed to lift the ban on Miraa imports from Kenya.

Munya said negotiations have been finalized and what is remaining is the signing of a deal which is set to take place in the next two weeks, a move that will see resumption of the Miraa trade between the two countries.

"Negotiations were completed. What's remaining is just finalizing the paperwork so that the business resumes but we have a surety that within two weeks trading of Miraa and other products will resume in the Somali market," he said.

Munya lauded President Uhuru Kenyatta for spearheading the talks that has seen the revival of the trade.

President Kenyatta was among Head of States who attended the inauguration of the new Somalia President on Thursday.

"You saw us in Somalia and I want to thank the President who has been leading the diplomatic negotiations quietly," stated Munya.

Former President Mohammed Farmaajo suspended Miraa imports from Kenya in 2020, citing COVID-19 restrictions but the suspension was never lifted as diplomatic issues kicked in.

The ban led to a loss of a daily market for more than 50 tons of Miraa valued at more than sh 20 million then.

Following the deal, Munya asked Miraa traders to now prepare their product, following the reopening of the market.

"We are taking the good news to our farmers to now prepare because the market will be open in two weeks," he said.

According to the Ministry of Finance, in 2021, the import of Miraa contributed sh 1.3 billion in tax to the country's revenue.

CS Munya also revealed that in the agreement, once the trade officially resumes, the Miraa cargo to Somalia will be using the Isiolo Airport to Mogadishu because it is the shortest route.

He said traders wouldn't need to take their product all the way to Wilson Airport.

In the agreement, Munya said Somalia would export their fish and fish products to the Kenya market.

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