KEPHIS Hosts Senior and High Level Government and other Stakeholders To Foster Corporation and Enhance Linkages

KEPHIS Headquarters, Nairobi – KEPHIS hosted senior and high level government staff and other stakeholders to discuss and explore ways of working together to execute her mandate.

The stakeholders, drawn from the Kenya Revenue Authority, Postal Corporation of Kenya, the Attorney General’s Office, the Anti Counterfeit Agency, the National Environment Management Authority, the Police, the Criminal Investigations Department, the Kenya National Accreditation Service, among others explored ways of fostering corporation, enhancing linkages and finding more ways of collaborating together to further the country’s market access, growth and economic development.

KEPHIS as a regulator in the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries achieves her mandate by working with stakeholders in government and the private sector. This is more so on the challenges of tackling fake seed locally, forgery of export documents and interceptions of Kenya’s horticultural produce in overseas markets.

In the exhibition area, stakeholders got the chance to see how KEPHIS assures the quality of agricultural inputs such as seed, soil, manure and fertilizers; how inspections are done to assure the quality of flowers, fruits and vegetables that are exported mainly to the European Union market, how seed certification works and how the work of plant breeders is protected by the Plant Variety Protection office at KEPHIS.

(Left and right) Kenya’s renowned horticultural produce: KEPHIS ensures that the produce meets international export requirements thus promoting economic growth and development

Mr. John Mwaniki, who represented the Cabinet Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries, Hon Willy Bett, elaborated the role that KEPHIS plays in facilitating international trade, pointing out that Kenya earned KES 91 billion in 2015 from the export of flowers, fruits, vegetables and nuts thanks to KEPHIS regulatory work. Moreover, KEPHIS trade facilitation has led to diversification of markets to include China, Australia, Ghana, South Korea and the Democratic Republic of Congo.  KEPHIS inspectors at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport inspect produce to ensure that what passes through East and Central Africa’s largest exit and entry point meets the requirements for international plant export, thus instilling confidence in Kenya’s trading partners.

However, despite these successes, stakeholders, notably exporters and clearing agents were urged to ensure that all produce is checked by KEPHIS before being exported. Mr. Mwaniki made is clear that it is a criminal offence for anyone to forge export documents such as the phytosanitary certificate; hence the police were urged to deal with suspects caught with fake export documents. Moreover, he urged the Postal Corporation of Kenya to work with KEPHIS so that only plant and plant material that is authorized gets into the country so as to prevent adverse effects on Kenya’s plant resources.

Some of the stakeholders who attended the event see firsthand the KEPHIS services

Mr. John Mwaniki, the Director of Agribusiness at the State Department Agriculture, delivers the keynote speech on behalf of the Cabinet Secretary Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries Hon Willy Bett during the stakeholders meeting  at KEPHIS headquarters.

Stellamaris Mulika of the seed section explaining how seed certification works

Seeing the different types of fertilizers…

Mr. Mwaniki urged the Kenya Revenue Authority and the Kenya Airports Authority and indeed everyone present to work together to protect Kenya’s plant resources and promote the export of quality agricultural produce

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