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June 29, 2022


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Kenya and the UAE forge comprehensive economic partnership agreement

  Kenya and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) just inked a new deal. The UAE’s Minister of Foreign Trade Thani Al Zeyoudioth recently disclosed that both countries have signed a comprehensive economic partnership agreement (Cepa). The deal would help Kenya distribute its products across the Asian market, including the Middle Eastern section.

A report by The East African, showed that Kenya was among the first African countries to begin a dialogue on bilateral trade deals with the United Arab Emirates in 2022, to bolster its oil market.

According to Al Zeyoudi, non-oil trade between both countries peaked at $3.1 billion in 2023, a 26.4% increase from the year prior. The minister made this known via X formerly known as Twitter, elaborating on the UAE’s plan to expand the bilateral trade between both countries, which cuts across numerous sectors.

“We will now look to expand across sectors from food production and mining to technology and logistics,” he said of the agreement,” Al Zeyoudi stated.

Rebecca Miano, Kenya’s Trade Cabinet Secretary according to the UAE’s state news agency WAM, stated that the Cepa deal would ensure that Kenyan goods spread across most Middle Eastern and Asian markets, and would aid in developing Kenya’s “national capabilities,” in invigorating the country’s investment inflow.

“The Kenyan leadership has identified trade as a key lever of economic growth and transformation. We are on a national development path that is seeking to increase industrial output, enhance the quality and global competitiveness of that output, and to expand the opportunities for its export,” she said

As seen in The East African, some countries the UAE has signed similar Cepa agreements with include Israel, Turkey India, and Indonesia. It also signed its first Cepa deal in Africa with Mauritius and the Republic of Congo-Brazzaville.

Kenya’s relationship with its Middle Eastern partners has been free-flowing, to say the least. In June 2023, Saudi Arabia became Kenya’s largest market to trade goods surpassing countries such as China, India, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to become Kenya’s largest single import market.

Additionally, Flydubai, the UAE’s government-owned airline, inaugurated direct flights to Mombasa, Kenya, in January 2024, making it the first time the airline is initiating direct flights to Mombasa, since 2016 when Transport Cabinet Secretary James Macharia awarded them the rights.

Source: businessinsider

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