Ugandan rice farmers demand protection against cheap imported rice

By Deo Wasswa
Rice farmers in Eastern and Northern Uganda through their association, Rice Association of Uganda have petitioned the 10th parliament to remove the Tax waivers on imported Rice.

According to the association, in 2015, the government  granted waivers to few so called investors to import brown rice on claims that there was low rice production in the country as compared to the demand.

These farmers says, it’s now three years down the load, the few people are still importing this cheap rice without paying any single revenue, and this has left the local production stressed with no market.

The statement presented to journalists by the association chairperson Rachel Kiconco Mbabazi, shows that the waivers granted have resulted in a loss of URA revenue in excess of 218 bn and forex losses to government in excess of 209 bn resulting in a total loss of 509 bn.

Annually close to 50,000 metric tonnes of rice imported to Uganda of which 14,000 tones coming from Tanzania and the rest comes from others countries especially Pakistan