Kenyatta: We Must Do Away With Trade Barriers


here geneva; font-size: small; line-height: 200%;”>Speaking Friday during a business roundtable forum at a Nairobi hotel, President Kenyatta said some of Kenya’s export products including cement, beef and textiles are currently in Nigeria’s import prohibition list.

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The President said, “We must commit ourselves to elimination of the barriers that are currently constraining the flow of goods and services between our two countries.”

He said with the available opportunities, there was no good reason for Africa to continue stagnating in poverty adding that the greatest challenge facing the current generation was to unlock the continent’s economic potential.

President Kenyatta underscored his Government’s commitment to eradicating harmful and undesirable business practices, especially those involving contra-band goods and banned products.

He said his Government has instituted a number of measures to contain the problem adding that the strict controls will build confidence and enhance trade between Kenya and Nigeria.

The President added, “There are some challenges that we must confront head on, recognizing that the benefits we are seeking from this partnership requires commitment, focus and a dedication to the common ideals that our two nations share.”

President Kenyatta assured the business community and investors in general that breaking of the barriers that have for years inhibited development of investment and trade among African nations was a priority for his Government.

The President said, “One of my highest priorities as President of Kenya is to break perennial barriers that have hindered the development of investment and trade among African nations.”

On changes in governance structures, President Kenyatta said the country has a lot to learn from the Nigerian Federal experience as resources and authority are devolved to county governments.

He added, “As you all know, Kenya is undergoing some fundamental changes in our governance structures. We are in the process of decentralizing the management of our national affairs to county governments.”

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan assured the business community attending the forum that his government is committed to promoting trade and investment for growth and prosperity of both countries.

He said private sector should be facilitated to operate smoothly as it is a key play in creating wealth and employment.

President Jonathan rooted for improved infrastructure to boost smooth movement of goods and services and enhance trade.

During the meeting Kenya and Nigeria Chambers of Commerce signed a Memorandum of Understanding to promote trade and investment between the two countries.

The three day Business Roundtable Forum was jointly organized by the Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KNCCI) and the Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA) and aims at increasing contacts to promote trade and investment in the two countries.


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