Uganda accuses Kenya of using AI concerns to control market
Kenya has banned poultry imports from Uganda because of fear of bird flu. However, Ugandan farmers accuse Kenya of taking advantage of the fear to cut back imports, thereby causing a trade imbalance.
The Kenyan government says Ugandan exporting firms do not have adequate systems for reporting diseases. It says the same is true for the legal framework governing disease control in Ugandan hatcheries.
Aga Sekalala is the proprietor of Ugachick Poultry Breeders and chairman of the Poultry Association of Uganda. He said that although AI is a threat, there hasn’t been a problem in Uganda, ading that there are measures in place to ensure that farms are clean.
Sekalala commented that Ugandan poultry farmers are loosing business. â€œWe have buyers in Kenya is willing to buy our products. We should be sending chicks to Kenya weekly but the Kenyan government won’t allow it. The Kenyan government has refused to let us export to Kenya, despite the fact that we have orders to the tune of about 20,000 chicks per week.â€
He accused the Kenyan government of making excused with the aim protecting its market. â€œIt is not bird flu, really. They are just trying to control the market. Even before the bird flu threat we tried to export to them but they couldn’t let us,â€ he said.