The Ministry of Investments, Trade and Industry has reaffirmed its commitment to supporting the fresh produce sector.
Recognizing the significant role that flowers, fruits, and vegetables play in the nation’s exports, the Ministry aims to ensure small-scale farmers benefit substantially from their hard work.
A meeting between Cabinet Secretary Moses Kuria and representatives of the Fresh Produce Exporters Association of Kenya (FPEAK) on Thursday August 17, 2023 highlighted various measures to empower farmers and bolster the industry.
During the meeting, chaired by Hosea Machuki, the Chairman of FPEAK, and attended by Hon. Edward Muriu, Mp Gatanga, key challenges facing the industry were addressed.
A notable proposition involves the potential conversion of existing horticulture businesses into Export Processing Zones, thereby providing farmers with tax incentives similar to those enjoyed by businessmen.
Additionally, plans were discussed for the installation of cold chain infrastructure through the electrification of the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR), ensuring that the fresh produce maintains international standards during transportation.
The Ministry’s commitment to tackling challenges such as HCDA levies and Kephis payments underscores its dedication to establishing a comprehensive administration and quality assurance hub for the industry’s overall advancement.
“We looked into the ways of ensuring our farmers reap the best returns as the businessmen do business as well. Among the challenges we have agreed to immediately address includes a possibility of converting the existing Horticulture businesses into Export processing zones,and hence enjoy the benefits of the zones in terms of taxes.
HCDA levies and Kephis payment challenges which will hasten the set up of a process administration and quality assurance hub to address all industry concerns.” Cabinet Secretary of the Ministry of Investments, Trade and Industry, Moses Kuria wrote.