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Cooking oil industry soars on counterfeit crackdown

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The crackdown on illicit goods has started yielding fruit and its impact is being felt across the manufacturing sector, well that is according to local edible oil manufacturers who have reported growth in market share since the multi-sectoral taskforce on illicit goods began its work in May, 2018.

Speaking during the Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM) Changamka Shopping Festival at Kasarani Stadium on Wednesday, KAM Chairperson Sachen Gudka revealed that oil manufacturers in the country including Bidco which owns the Elianto brand have reported a market share growth of 62% since the Wanyama Musiambo led taskforce stepped up its efforts to rid the Kenyan market off illicit goods.

“I can confirm that the biggest beneficiaries of the taskforce are manufacturers. Thus far food and beverage manufacturers have already reported an improved business environment but the edible oil manufacturers have recorded the best numbers reporting a market share growth of 62%,” said Mr Gudka.

Speaking at the same function, Industrialization Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya reaffirmed the government’s commitment towards ensuring that manufacturing contributes 22% to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by 2022 from the current 8%.

“We have taken a lot of flak for our directive requiring that all cargo be inspected from the country of origin, but this is not something we will not backtrack on,” said Munya in reference to the conformity assessment programme which requires importers to have a Pre-Export Verification of Conformity to Standards certificate (PVOC) before their goods are inspected by the Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) at the Port of Mombasa.

PVOC is a document that shows that the goods have already been inspected at their market of origin.

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Citing Kajiado Governor Joseph Ole Lenku’s antics on Friday last week when he led irate youths into storming Tata Chemicals Limited, a soda ash firm based in Magadi over unpaid land rates amounting to Ksh17 billion, Mr Gudka warned that local politics is scaring local investors

“This sends the wrong signal to investor. We need to ensure that we always communicate in a structured manner,’ said Mr Gudka.

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Lenku led a section of Members of County Assembly (MCAs) and youth to the plant demanding that the company pays up. So irate were the youth that the protestors stormed a danger zone in the plant, exposing themselves to toxic chemicals.

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