• Millers and grain importers were given a duty waiver of 1.4 metric tonnes of maize and 1.1 metric tonnes of rice in December 2022.
• But only 90,621 metric tonnes of maize and 95,381 metric tonnes of rice have arrived in the country.
Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Mithika Linturi has offered millers and importers more room to bring into the country duty-free maize and rice.
However, he said no extension of the duty waiver licenses will be allowed beyond August 2023 as local maize farmers are expected to harvest their yields.
"I have offered millers and grain importers who have already imported their duty-free consignments additional allocation to import the commodities under the duty-free arrangement to achieve our main aim of reducing food prices in the country," Linturi said.
He was speaking on Tuesday at Kilimo House in Nairobi after holding a meeting with millers and grain importers to discuss how to lower the prices of food through duty-free importation of grains.
Linturi said as a short term measure to lower the cost of food, millers and grain importers were given a duty waiver of 1.4 metric tonnes of maize and 1.1 metric tonnes of rice in December 2022.
Linturi said only less than 1o per cent of the commodities have been imported since December 2022 when the import duty waiver was issued.
But only 90,621 metric tonnes of maize and 95,381 metric tonnes of rice have arrived in the country.
"My ministry has noted underperformance by millers and grain importers in importation of maize and rice," the CS said.
Linturi said importation licenses of those who fail to import food stuff into the country will be revoked.
"I have issued a 7-day ultimatum to holders of the licenses to prove that they are importing the commodities failure to which we will have their licenses revoked," he said.
Additionally, Linturi said no miller or grain importer will be allowed to re-export maize and rice shipments that were imported using duty-free licenses.