Exports to Uganda grow 45 percent in 10 months


Export earnings from Uganda increased 45 percent in the 10 months to October this year, propelled by sale of farm produce and fuel products to the land-locked country.

Data published by the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics show that Kenya exported goods worth Sh96 billion to Uganda up from Sh66 billion over similar period to account for 11.5 percent of total export earnings.

The increase in Uganda’s share in Kenya’s earnings to more than 10 percent poses a concentration risk on Kenya’s export earnings should there be a fallout or a major shift in policy that sidelines Kenya.

The jump comes at a time the country is planning an alternative fuel import deal that takes Kenya and Tanzania out of the picture.

Kenya’s main exports to Uganda include iron and steel products valued at Sh7.39 billion and petroleum products valued at Sh5 billion last year.

Over the 10-month period total export earnings grew by 14 percent to a record Sh831.4 billion while import expenditure grew by one percent to Sh2.12 trillion.

The faster growth in exports compared to imports narrowed the trade deficit by six percent, defying expectations of a worsening trade balance given the massive depreciation on the shilling that has shed a fifth of its value against the dollar since last January.

Other markets that recorded significant growth in receipts include France (51 percent) and United Arab Emirates (47.4 percent).

The United States of America, which is the second biggest market of Kenyan goods, was toppled by Pakistan and the Netherlands as receipts dropped by 22 percent to Sh50.2 billion.

China, the single largest source of Kenya’s import, recorded a slight fall in imports to Kenya down two percent to Sh368.5 billion as UAE recorded a seven and 20 percent rise in imports.

Four countries, namely China, India, Saudi Arabia and UAE shipped out goods worth Sh 1.1 trillion into the country accounting for 51 percent of Kenya’s total import bill in the 10-month period.

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