Dumping and predatory trade

Chicken dumping hammers Kenyan farmers

With arguments that are all too familiar in South Africa, yet another African country is complaining that dumped chicken imports are ruining the local poultry industry.

The victim this time is Kenya, but the villain is not the usual dumping suspects – Brazil, the European Union or the United States. It is a neighbouring country, Uganda.

More than 2 000 chicken farmers in Kenya say they will have to close their businesses if the Kenyan government does not introduce urgent measures to curb dumped chicken imports from across the border.

The problem is duty-free chicken imports from Uganda into Kenya. Tanzania does not allow any imports of Kenyan chicken while Uganda imposes a 25% tax on Kenyan chicken. Traders from Uganda and Tanzania can import chicken into Kenya tax free.

“Chicken producers have suffered under the suppressing effect of predatory trade for years, which has kept an inherently healthy and globally efficient industry from expanding and developing,” said Zach Munyanbu, director of a Kenyan farmers’ co-operative.

“Our investigations confirm once again that dumping is real and has inflicted material injury on this crucial local industry which plays such a key role in job creation and food security.”

Munyanbu said eliminating unfair trade would stimulate local production, which in turn would create more jobs and bring transformation and economic growth to the benefit of Kenya as a whole.

In 2021, Kenya banned chicken imports from Uganda for a period of six months, to the benefit of the local industry. Kenya’s chicken producers are now urging more permanent measures.

Image: Screenshot from “Ghana’s Last Poultry Farmers”, a televised feature on EU chicken dumping in Ghana produced by Germany’s public broadcaster Deutsche Welle.