Eight Kenyan firms to import 43,000 tonnes of industrial sugar

Trucks within the port of Mombasa waiting to be loaded with imported bagged sugar.  

Photo credit: File photo | Nation Media Group

Eight Kenyan firms have been cleared to import 43,000 metric tonnes of sugar under a special East Africa Community (EAC) tax for the manufacture of various industrial products, including soda, milk drinks, and chocolate.

All sugar-based products made in Kenya are manufactured using industrial sugar imported under the EAC-wide duty remission scheme, which attracts a payable rate of 10 percent duty.

Deng Alor Kuol, chairperson of the EAC Council of Ministers, said the firms would be allowed to make the shipments over the next 12 months.

“A remission of import duty is approved for Kenya for the following manufacturers on the specified quantities of sugar for industrial use to apply a duty rate of ten percentum (10 percent) for 12 months,” he said in a notice.

Coca-Cola Beverages Kenya Limited has been cleared to ship 20,000 tonnes of industrial sugar for the production of carbonated drinks and juice, while Equator Bottlers will import 10,000 tonnes of the sweetener for the production of similar products.

Trufoods Limited got clearance to bring in 5,000 tonnes of industrial sugar for use in the manufacture of jams and marmalades, tomato sauces, tomato ketchup, hot and sweet sauces, spices and condiments, drinking cocoa and chocolate, among others.

Others cleared to import industrial sugar are Jetlak Foods Limited (3,000 tonnes), Devyani Food Industries Kenya (2,000), Bidco Africa Limited (1,000), Kenafric Beverages & Bottling Limited (1,200), and Tamtamz Limited (800).

The importation of industrial sugar under the EAC remission scheme is tightly regulated. As a precondition, every Kenyan manufacturer must be registered and maintain their registration as a manufacturer with the Sugar Directorate.

Similarly, every manufacturer, other than where that firm only imports sugar from a Common Market for Eastern and Southern African member states, must be gazetted under the EAC Customs Management Duty Remission Scheme.

Subject to the conditions above, the manufacturer will engage with a supplier and receive a pro forma invoice with which to apply for an Import Declaration Form.

The manufacturer will then apply for pre-approval from the Sugar Directorate for every separate shipment of refined sugar, regardless of origin. The application shall declare the origin, volume, quality, and price.

The manufacturer, where the refined sugar originates from outside of Comesa, shall apply to The National Treasury for authority for every separate shipment of refined sugar. The application shall declare the origin, volume, quality, and price.

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