KEPSA Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries Sector Board held its bimonthly meeting on 14th August 2019 at KEPSA offices. The meeting was chaired by Mr. Chris Wilson. The objective of the meeting was to discuss sector engagements and progress made on the draft regulations including Crops (horticulture) Regulations 2018, Ware House Receipt System Regulations 2019 and Crops (Irish potato) Regulations 2019.
During the meeting, members were updated on the Political Economy Analysis of the livestock sector in Kenya Dissemination Workshop organized by the Kenya Market Trust that took place on 30th July 2019 and presided over by Mr. Harry Kimtai, Principal Secretary, State Department of Livestock, Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries, and Irrigation. It was observed that opportunities to engage the national and county governments were available hence the need for the private sector to be more proactive in seizing the opportunities.
The meeting was informed about a joint stakeholder engagement on Commodity markets and Warehouse Receipt System (WRS) Regulations that took place 13th August 2019 courtesy of the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Cooperatives, State Department of International Trade. Members were invited to give their input on the WRS regulations which are under public review.
On self-regulation mechanisms proposed by the several BMOs including the provision of extension services on a PPP basis, it was highlighted that the private sector needs to create a business case to convince regulators to come on board.
Other issues discussed included the need to lower freight cost for the Standard Gauge Railway in order to attract bulk exporters like the tea industry, the need to tame rising labour costs in the agriculture sector and initiatives by the Agrochemical Association of Kenya (AAK) and Pest Control Products Board (PCPB) to create awareness on proper use of pesticides.