Nairobi residents should brace themselves to pay more for cereals after the Nairobi County government introduced a new market cess for cereal products.
The millers have protested the move, saying the additional tax on cereal will increase the cost of doing business and hence burden consumers.
Castigating the move, Paloma Fernandes, chief executive officer of the Cereal Millers Association, highlighted the need to have Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) and the county government reconsider their decision to double taxation.
She also highlighted that the millers were currently dealing with a decreased supply of raw material because of the Ukraine-Russia war.
“The introduction of market cess by the KRA on behalf of Nairobi County will be detrimental, as it will increase the cost of doing business in Nairobi,” said Fernandes.
The millers noted that Kenyans are already facing a hard economy following the escalating prices of household commodities such as cooking oil.
KRA and the county government, in a partnership, announced that it would affect the changes starting March 1, 2022 and will be effective to all millers at their premises while they are receiving cereals in the capital.
An agricultural cess is already a form of tax that county governments levy on the movement of agricultural produce from the source county and in transit within the county.
Currently, millers are grappling with inter-county barriers having to pay cess in several counties as the bulk of maize processed in Nairobi is ferried from Rift Valley.