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Indonesia supports Kenya to achieve edible oil self-sufficiency

The World’s largest producer of palm oil, Indonesia, is expected in the country next week to discuss with the government how it can assist the country in attaining self-sufficiency in edible oils through large-scale farming of palm oil, sunflower oil, and soya beans.

The delegation of leading Indonesian government and private companies is expected in Nairobi next week to discuss with President William Ruto and Cabinet Secretaries Moses Kuria (Investments, Trade, and Industry) and Mithika Linturi (Agriculture) an agreement for end-to-end development of the edible oil industry.

In a press statement sent to newsrooms from the Ministry of Investment, Trade, and Industry, the talks will be centered on supporting farmers in selected counties of Lamu, Kwale, Tana River, Taita Taveta, Homa Bay, Migori, Kisumu, and Busia through an outgrowth scheme as well as large-scale plantation farming.

Kenya currently imports crude palm oil worth US $ 1 billion annually through five companies, including Bidco, Kapa Oil, Pwani Oil, Menengai, and Golden Africa.

Last December, there was an outcry from consumers when the prices of edible Oil skyrocketed to Sh 480 per litre, forcing the government to import edible oil through the Kenya National Trading Corporation, thus reducing the retail price by more than half to Sh 220 per litre currently.

The Indonesian delegation will be led by Coordinating Minister for Maritime and Investment Affairs, Mr. Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, who is now visiting the country for the second time in six months after holding talks with President Ruto in January.

Minister Luhut’s visit is expected to prepare the ground for a State Visit by President Joko Widodo in August this year.

In May this year, President Ruto dispatched CS Kuria, who led a reciprocal senior government delegation to Jakarta to discuss the Kenya-Indonesia partnership, where Indonesia offered to import 700,000 cows from Kenya.

Indonesia is the world’s 15th largest economy, with a population of 300 million people and a Gross Domestic Product 18 times the size of Kenya.

Indonesia, a member of the G20, is the world’s largest producer of Nickel and has been spearheading a South-to-South collaboration to stop the export of unprocessed raw materials and get a fair price for Carbon Credits for the Global South.

The delegation will also include government and private companies keen to invest in other sectors, including the blue economy, mining, meat and livestock, apparel and textiles, geothermal energy, petroleum refineries and exploration, sugar farming, and pharmaceutical manufacturing.

By Bernadette Khaduli

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