The Privatization Commission has kicked off engaging with stakeholders in the sugar industry to find an amicable solution that will pave way for the sale of the five Public Sector Owned/Controlled Sugar Companies.
The five sugar companies are Chemelil, Miwani, Muhoroni, Nzoia, and SONY that are located in the larger Western Kenya region.
This is in line with the High Court directive contained in the judgment issued on 10th November 2017 following a consolidated petition against the privatization of the sugar companies.
The stakeholders’ engagement exercise is expected to take place over the next two months. This will then set the stage for re-advertisement of requests for Expression of Interest (EOI), shortlisting of the pre-qualified firms, the invitation of bids and ultimately announcing the strategic partners to whom 51 percent of shareholding in each of the five sugar companies will be transferred.
Under the privatization strategy approved by the National Assembly in 2015, the Commission will seek strategic partners who will come with financial, technical and operational expertise in exchange for a 51 percent stake in the sugar companies.
The technical and operational expertise will ensure that upon privatization, the sugar companies are run efficiently and effectively for the benefit of all stakeholders (the sugarcane farmers, employees, shareholders and the communities in the cane growing catchment areas).
The injection of private capital in the Public Sector Owned/Controlled Sugar Companies is expected to go a long way in rehabilitating and modernizing the millers for competitive and sustainable production.
The net effect of privatization coupled with other complementary initiatives will be vibrant sugar mills whose production capacity will bridge the perennial local sugar consumption deficit while increasing exports to the regional markets.