Kenya, Nigeria sign agreements to strengthen trade
Kenya and Nigeria have signed agreements that will see the two nations work together to boost bilateral trade.
In a joint communiqué, President Kenyatta and President Goodluck Jonathan also agreed to work together in the area of agriculture, fisheries and livestock.
“The two governments have signed a memorandum of understanding in the area of immigration that will see visa exception, trans-national crime, drug abuse and improving trade between the two countries,” said Kenya’s Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed, who read the statement.
The two countries agreed to fight international terror groups Al-Shabab and Boko Haram in their respective territories.
President Kenyatta also agreed to make a state visit to Nigeria in future.
He said that the two nations will increase trade and investments by creating a better environment for cultural and tourism exchange.
“Kenya and Nigeria have agreed to improve their cooperation in increasing trade with Nigeria on West Coast of Indian Ocean and Kenya on the East Cost of India Ocean and we can achieve a lot,” said President Kenyatta.
He said that Nigeria was a better destination for investment saying that about 20 per cent of the Africa population operate in Nigeria.
President Jonathan said there is need for Africa to work together to become a platform for investments that will benefit its people.
“We want to see Africa going beyond being the primary source of material that service foreign companies but a continent that can add value to its products and export to other countries,” said President Jonathan.
He said that the trade level between members of the European Union is at 70 per cent and between Asian nations at 50 per cent but Africa countries was still at 11 per cent, which he said was not healthy.
“We have to look at ways of being able to boost bilateral and trade ties between Africa countries so that we do not rely on assistance from foreign nations,” said President Jonathan.
He said trading blocs such as EAC and SADC among others in the continent need support to boost trade in the region.
“Africa has to be a serious economic bloc and we can only achieve that by creating wealth for our people,” he said.
Last year, Kenya exported Sh2.9 billion worth of goods and services to Nigeria while its imports stood at Sh48.6 million, according to Kenya National Bureau of Statistics.
President Jonathan arrived in the country on Thursday for a three-day state visit aimed at boosting bilateral and trade ties between Kenya and Nigeria.