Commodities

Russia overtakes Egypt as the second biggest buyer of Kenyan tea

DN-COAST-TEA-1306E

Tea prices at the Mombasa auction improved marginally in last week’s trading as volumes offered for sale dropped by more than 280,000 kilogrammes. FILE PHOTO | NMG

geraldandae

Summary

  • Russia dislodged Egypt as the second biggest buyer of Kenyan tea in August, signalling gains from a two-year campaign by the Tea Directorate to woo customers in the world’s largest country.
  • Data from the directorate indicate that in August, Russia bought 2.3 million kilogrammes of tea, which was 40 percent more compared with the same period last year.
  • This saw Russia overtake Egypt, which for the longest time has been the second key buyer of the Kenyan commodity after Pakistan. Pakistan maintained the top same spot in August albeit with a marginal decline.

Russia dislodged Egypt as the second biggest buyer of Kenyan tea in August, signalling gains from a two-year campaign by the Tea Directorate to woo customers in the world’s largest country.

Data from the directorate indicate that in August, Russia bought 2.3 million kilogrammes of tea, which was 40 percent more compared with the same period last year.

This saw Russia overtake Egypt, which for the longest time has been the second key buyer of the Kenyan commodity after Pakistan. Pakistan maintained the top same spot in August albeit with a marginal decline.

In the review period, the volumes of tea that Egypt bought declined significantly by 8.6 million kilogrammes to touch a low of 1.4 million kilos.

The huge decline saw Egypt pushed down to position five.

In June and July, Russia held position five but its volumes have been increasing significantly, with July recording a growth of 87 percent to touch 2.1 million kilogrammes.

Tea exports to Kenya’s major markets dropped by 14 million kilos in the eight months to August compared with the same period last year as the world market remains suppressed.

Data report from the regulator indicates that volumes exported dropped to 323 million kilogrammes in the review period, from 337 million during the corresponding time last year.

The decline in import volumes for the country’s top market highlights the effects that the virus has had on international trade.

Most of the tea importing countries are still battling with the effects of the coronavirus, slowing purchases since March when the disease emerged.