Kenya to strengthen bilateral ties with South Africa

During the Trade and Investment Summit, to be held in Cape Town, Kenya is aiming to strengthen its bilateral and trade relations with South Africa. In an interview ahead of the bilateral summit, Kenyan High Commissioner to South Africa, Ambassador Jean Njeri Kamau, said the key objective was to create an understanding of doing business in the East African country, which boasts the region’s biggest economy.

Kamau said the trade and investment summit was aimed at providing a forum for government-to-business engagement, enhancing exposure of trade and investment opportunities available in Kenya, creating awareness of the new and prioritised investment opportunities in Kenya and urging South African investors to venture into a number of sectors, including agriculture. 

The envoy said that during the summit they would explore practical measures to strengthen trade relations between Kenya and South Africa and work towards the removal of impediments to trade.

Kamau said they would collaborate in reducing the cost of doing business in Kenya through partnerships in programmes, like entering into joint ventures to increase investment in irrigation to reduce dependency of rain-fed agriculture and increasing the amount of land under crop production.

The balance of trade has been heavily in favour of South Africa and therefore, a lot needs to be done to increase Kenya’s basket of exports to South Africa.

Kamau pointed out there was a huge potential market for Kenyan tea, beef products such as sausages, beef and pork prawn, butter, plum jam, fish, flowers and organic vegetables.

However, Kenya’s exports to South Africa suffer high tariffs and discriminating levies, an factor that has prevented Kenyan goods from accessing the South African market.


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