Kenya has lifted a ban on fish imports following a biting shortage after President Uhuru Kenyatta’s directive against Chinese catch that had flooded the market.
The ban was lifted in January, barely three months after the restrictions took effect in November.
Mr Kenyatta, in ordering the ban, had said it was inappropriate to bring in the fish when local sources could well satisfy the demand.
“We were forced to lift the ban to ease the shortage after a huge consignment of fish got stuck at the port, impacting negatively on local supplies,” said an official at the Fisheries Department who is not allowed to speak on the matter.
Kenya imports approximately 1.8 million kilogramme of fish every month. It produces about 135,000 tonnes annual against an annual demand of 500,000 tonnes.
Fish imports from China hit Ksh1.7 billion ($17 million) last year as Kenya’s appetite for Chinese fish continued to grow with the country seeking to bridge a deficit.