In a monumental move that has set the stage for a paradigm shift, President Ruto is exuberantly applauding the newly forged trade agreement with the European Union. This groundbreaking deal holds immense significance as Kenya prepares to spread its wings and gain access to a whopping 27 diverse markets across the European continent.
Addressing the momentous occasion during the conclusion of the Kenya-European Union Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) negotiations, President Ruto emphasized that this agreement signifies a long-term commitment to securing a steadfast and reliable market for our hardworking farmers. Brace yourselves, folks, because we’re talking about farmers in various sectors like flowers, coffee, tea, fish, peas, and the delectable world of edible fruits and nuts!
In addition, president Ruto went on to emphasize the broader implications of this agreement, declaring that it will provide Kenya with the impetus it needs to tap into sustainable global value chains. We’re talking about investing in enhanced competitiveness to manufacture high-value products, accelerating technology acquisition and innovation for product development, widening the horizons in green finance and investment, and fortifying our framework for export trade. That’s one heck of a comprehensive package, wouldn’t you say?
President Ruto further stressed that this agreement is not just about boosting trade and investment; it’s also about fostering long-term economic growth and creating much-needed jobs. It’s a transformative force that will deepen the economic linkages between Kenya and the European Union. Imagine the new prospects that lie ahead for Kenyan and European firms, especially for our beloved Micro, Small, and Medium-Sized Enterprises. They are the backbone of our entrepreneurial spirit!
The President revealed that this agreement will grant our cherished Kenyan products immediate duty-free and quota-free entry into the European Union from the very day it comes into effect. Now that’s a real game-changer! And here’s a cherry on top: European Union products will progressively receive duty reductions over the course of 25 years, allowing for fair and gradual adjustments as we progress on our development journey.
President Ruto made it clear that this agreement aligns perfectly with Kenya’s ambitions of transforming into a green economy. It will open doors for trade and trade-related policies that will propel our enterprises to participate actively in sustainable global value chains. We’re talking about creating a supportive business ecosystem that nurtures our local firms and empowers them to thrive in the global arena.
Let’s not forget the vital role the European Union plays in Kenya’s trade landscape. As our foremost export destination and second largest trading partner, the EU has been a valued collaborator. In 2022 alone, our bilateral trade reached a staggering €3.3 billion, marking an incredible 27% increase since 2018. This trade agreement will undoubtedly unlock even more opportunities for our businesses and exporters. Brace yourselves for the influx of possibilities!