President Uhuru Kenyatta is now charming American Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) to invest in Kenya to help unlock the huge trade potential that exists between Kenya and the United States of America.
He said more partnerships between Kenyan and American SMEs will help unlock the huge trade potential the two countries have been enjoying.”
“This is where the real opportunity lies. This is not to say that we are telling the big boys not to come in, they are already here. The big corporates are already here.”
“But they don’t have the capacity to propel inclusive growth as the small and medium enterprises that have a much greater capacity of affecting lives and changing the livelihoods at the grassroots level,” President Kenyatta said.
The President invited American SMEs to invest more in the country by entering into mutually beneficial arrangements with their Kenyan counterparts, adding that the enterprises are the backbone of Kenya’s vibrant economy.
The Head of State spoke Tuesday evening during a virtual U.S Chamber of Commerce Global Leaders’ Forum on Economic Recovery.
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He invited American enterprises to set shop in Kenya saying the country provides a ready market for US products and has an expanding economy supported by an innovative and highly skilled young labour force that is ready to absorb American investments and technology.
“I believe this is a mutually beneficial relationship that offers investment opportunities with great returns for American companies while at the same time offering job opportunities to Kenyans,” the President said.
He also touched on climate change, saying Kenya was utilizing mobile phone technologies to boost environmental conservation and agricultural productivity efforts by sharing of information on smart farming practices, better soil management and water conservation practices with farmers.
“These are some of the things that we are doing to improve farming but also to make it more climate-friendly while at the same time increasing yields and reducing costs to farmers,” President Kenyatta said.
In the energy sector, Kenya has since shifted focus to utilise the use of green sources of electricity to power the country’s agriculture and industrial sectors.
“Kenya is, for example, ranked among the top 10 in the world because we now have almost 90 percent of our power coming from green sources – be it geothermal, wind or solar as well as hydro which has been the traditional source in Kenya for a very long time,” the President said.
And as African states gear up for the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), Uhuru reaffirmed Kenya’s stand saying the arrangement had consolidated Africa’s market of over one billion people into one basket making Africa an investment basket.
US Chamber of Commerce Executive Vice President Myron Brilliant assured President Kenyatta of his association’s full backing of the Kenya-US free trade agreement negotiations and the country’s Covid-19 containment efforts.
“We also support Kenya in combating the pandemic (COVID-19), and support your efforts in enhancing trade and investment opportunities,” said Brilliant.
The President also called for increased availability of vaccines to African countries, saying focus must be directed to ensuring that developing and developed countries have equitable access to Covid-19 vaccines.
“No one is going to be safe until everybody is safe. The world economy is not going to recover until everybody is safe. Vaccines availability is going to be the key to getting the world economy back on its feet.”