Egypt unrest leads to dip in tea price at Mombasa
Posted Thursday, September 26 2013 at 01:00
Kampala- Uganda’s tea auction price at Mombasa has dipped further, a trend which is destined to negatively impact the country’s annual exports.
Tea, one of the country’s leading export commodities, is currently auctioned at (Shs4,590) $1.8 per Kilogramme down from Shs5,610 ($2.2) it last traded.
Experts in the industry attribute the dip to the on-going instabilities in Egypt which is one of the leading buyers of East African tea at the Mombasa Auction.
“We are worried the dip in prices is going to negatively impact the country’s annual export earnings,” Mr Adolf Sabiiti, the general manager of Mpanga Tea, said in an interview with the Daily Monitor, said.
Mr Sabiiti said this situation will also affect farmers’ ability to manage their families and buy fertilisers to boost the crop (tea).
A kilogramme of tea at Mombasa is currently at Shs5,814 ($2.28), down from Shs5,865 ($2.3) last month and down from Shs7,905 ($3.1) one year ago. This is a change of -0.18 per cent from last month and -26.03 per cent from a year ago.
Ugandan tea at the Mombasa auction remains the least auctioned in the region compared to what Rwanda, Burundi and Kenya get per kilogramme.
Meanwhile, there is hope that production is gradually increasing as the rains start in the growing regions where farmers have started applying fertilisers to boost production.
“We expect an improved crop between October and December which is the peak season of the tea calendar if we get good rains,” Mr Sabiiti said.
According to records from Uganda Tea Association, there are continued reports for more precipitation of 93.2mm, 91.4mm and 37mm in the tea growing areas of Bushenyi, Fort Portal and Kibaale, respectively.