NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Kenya is set to launch the first electronic tea
auction in Africa, an official said on Monday.
Edward Mudibo, the
Managing Director of East African Tea Trade Association (EATTA),
noted that the new system will start trial operations in
“Tea buyers and
brokers will use computers and screens during the auction period
as opposed to the use of a hammer during their weekly,” Mudibo
told Xinhua in an interview.
He added that the
system will remain under trials for one year before being
launched officially in December 2019.
auction is held in public and is an “open cry” system where
buyers compete for lots of tea by bidding against each other in
an auction room.
Mudibo revealed that
Kenya will be the first country in Africa and the second in the
world after India to unveil the system.
“The system of
buying where a broker hits the hammer during the weekly Mombasa
auction must come to an end to allow e-auction,” he added.
The Mombasa tea
auction is the world’s largest black tea auction and handles
about 75 percent of tea exported through the port of Mombasa,
covering shipments from the EATTA member countries of Burundi,
Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda, the Democratic Republic of Congo,
Tanzania, Ethiopia, Malawi, Madagascar and Mozambique.
production declines in 2017 over poor weather
NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Kenyan tea production declined last year due to
the unfavorable weather conditions, an official revealed on
Samuel Ogola, the
Interim Head, Tea Directorate at the Agriculture and Food
Authority (AFA), said that 2017 production dropped to 439
million kilograms in 2017 compared to 473 million that was
recorded in 2016.
“The decline was
caused by depressed rainfall conditions that were severe during
the first quarter of the year,” Ogola told journalists in
Ogola however said
that production was not only lower in Kenya alone but across
most tea producers globally.
He revealed that
following the last year’s trend, Kenya has intensified promotion
of its tea in Iran, China, Russia and United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Ogola is optimistic
that Kenya’s economy is expected to record further growth since
the country expects to have good weather conditions this year.
He said the
country’s tea auction prices are expected to remain stable at 3
U.S. dollars per kilogram and export volume to rise by 2 percent
to 423 million kilograms.
He said that despite
the drop in production, 2017 maintained economic growth momentum