Kenyan exports to Russia are being halted due to sanctions worth Sh10 billion.

Kenyan exports to Russia are being halted due to sanctions worth Sh10 billion.

Kenyan shipment of tea, flowers, coffee and fruits to Russia has been halted as a result of western sanctions placed on Moscow following its invasion of Ukraine, putting local smallholder farmers at a disadvantage.

Major container and shipping companies briefly halted cargo shipments to and from Russia in reaction to the restrictions, which are anticipated to cost roughly Sh10 billion yearly.

Excluding Russian banks and the central bank from SWIFT, the international payment system has made it more difficult for the country to pay for imports and receive cash for exports.

SWIFT (Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication) is a secure messaging system that allows for quick cross-border payments. Its instructions are usually followed without inquiry, allowing international trade to flow smoothly.

The removal of Russian banks from SWIFT will make it more risky and costly for Kenyan exporters, perhaps suspending supplies of spices, nuts, and vegetables to Russia.

Russia’s attack on its neighbors is the largest state to state invasion in Europe since World War II, drawing condemnation from the United States, The United Kingdom and the European Union

The influence of economic sanctions was evident this week at the Mombasa Tea Auction, when Russian purchasers – the fifth-largest consumer of Kenyan tea after Pakistan, Egypt, the United Kingdom, and the United Arab Emirates – stayed away.