TRALAC - Trade Law Centre

Kenyan industrialists ink deal for export growth

Thursday, 28 April 2016

Source: The Namibian (Namibia)

Kenya’s industrialists on Tuesday signed an agreement with a regional investment body to help in the efforts to promote trade and investment under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (Agoa).

The deal, which was inked in Nairobi between the Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM) and the East Africa Trade And Investment Hub (EATIH), will also support policy reform activities and the expansion of trading avenues.

KAM CEO Phyllis Wakiaga said the deal strengthens KAM’s commitment in seizing the opportunity to realise better business opportunities beyond borders. 

“We must go beyond the apparel export and strategise ways that we can explore the gains of approximately 6 400 products that are currently eligible for Agoa,” Wakiaga said in Nairobi.

Agoa is a preferential market access system given to specific countries in Africa and the Caribbean by the United States.

Under the trade agreement, most sub−Saharan African countries are allowed to export over 6 000 products duty−free to the US market. 

Data from the Export Promotion Council indicates that Kenya’s non−textile exports to Washington mostly consist of coffee, fruits, precious stones, nuts, cut flowers and tea, while its imports include machinery and other capital goods. 

Wakiaga said Agoa offers great opportunities for Kenya’s local businesses, especially the SMEs. 

“It is essential that we build their capacity to enable them to leverage this partnership to realise financial sustainability for their businesses. Beyond this, we are also looking to diversify our exports through this partnership and increase the competitiveness of various agricultural value chains,” she noted. 

Wakiaga said KAM will be organising and hosting trade delegations as well as policy and investment promotion activities which will attract investment in the mutual priority sectors, that is textiles and garments, leather and leather products, agro− processing, horticulture, ICT and cotton. 

“Our country must work towards expanding the range of products that are currently being exported to the US market under Agoa,” she added.

“African economic operators must now work towards addressing the underlying challenges that have prevented them in the last 15 years from seizing the opportunity to realise better business with the United States,” said EATIH chief of party Juan Estrada−Valle. 

 

View related news articles

'The opportunities are vast in a potential US-Kenya FTA'

'The opportunities are vast in a potential US-Kenya FTA'

Last year, the U.S. and Kenya announced the launch of free trade negotiations, the first of its kind between the U.S. and a sub-Saharan Africa country. If successful, it would be the most significant trade development in the region since the enactment of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) trade preference program in 2000. To better understand the key issues...

06 May, 2021
Report: A look at the potential benefits and challenges of a US – Kenya trade agreement

Report: A look at the potential benefits and challenges of a US – Kenya trade agreement

The American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) Kenya has partnered with the U.S. Africa Business Centre (USAfBC) and Covington to publish a business trade report. The report, titled US-Kenya Trade Negotiations: Implications for the Future of the U.S.-Africa Trade Relationship, examines the challenges and benefits of a potential free trade agreement (FTA) between the...

30 April, 2021
Kenya: 'Uhuru–Blinken talks a breath of life to US trade deal'

Kenya: 'Uhuru–Blinken talks a breath of life to US trade deal'

Trade talks between Kenya and the US could resume soon following Tuesday's virtual meeting between President Uhuru Kenyatta and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken. This is after a five-month break occasioned by change of g-uard in the US as President Joe Biden took over from Donald Trump after last November’s elections. The settling down of the Biden administration put...

29 April, 2021
'Biden Administration dampens Kenya's hopes for bilateral trade deal'

'Biden Administration dampens Kenya's hopes for bilateral trade deal'

The Biden administration's plans to review foreign trade policy and refocus it on America's economic recovery have thrown long-running free trade negotiations with Kenya into disarray. In a development that casts doubts on the future of a bilateral free trade agreement (FTA) with Kenya, United States Trade Representative Katherine Tai has informed Kenyan Minister...

05 April, 2021
'Uncertainty around Kenya-US Free trade deal'

'Uncertainty around Kenya-US Free trade deal'

A cloud of uncertainty has engulfed Kenya’s pursuit of a free trade agreement (FTA) with the United States due to the impending change of guard at the White House.  Even before he takes office, President-elect Joe Biden has sent strong indications of plans to annul many of President Donald Trump’s policies, cutting across trade, environment and geopolitics...

18 January, 2021
Kenya exports to US climb to Sh67 billion

Kenya exports to US climb to Sh67 billion

Kenyan exports to America under the Africa Growth Opportunities Act (AGOA) hit Sh67 billion last year, a marginal increase of 3.7 per cent from Sh64 billion recorded in the previous year. According to the latest report from the Office of the US Trade Representative, Kenya emerged the fourth exporter under Agoa, after Nigeria (Sh310 billion), South Africa (Sh200 billion) and...

30 December, 2020