Trade between Egypt and Kenya has grown considerably over the past three years, reported Rafat Al-Ansari, Egypt’s ambassador to Kenya, who spoke at the Egypt 2001 Trade Exhibition at the Kenyatta International Conference Center in Nairobi last week.
According to the ambassador, trade between Kenya and Egypt has gone up by 110 percent between 1998 and 2000. From $109-million worth of business in 1998, the trade volume increased to $215 million in 1999 and to $229 million in 2000.
The trade balance is overwhelmingly in Kenya’s favor. In 2000, Kenya exported $209-million worth of goods to Egypt, while Egypt exported $20 million worth to Kenya.
Al-Ansari said that a number of factors were responsible for the greater volume of trade, among them Egypt's association since 1998 with the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA). As a result of this association, Egypt implemented a 90 percent reduction in customs tariffs on goods imported from the COMESA region from February 1999 onward.
According to the ambassador, other factors responsible for the growth in the trade volume were the launch of two Kenya-based Egyptian trading interests—the Egypt East Africa and South-to-South ventures. Furthermore, he said, an Egyptian shipping company has begun servicing the Indian Ocean port of Mombassa. — (Albawaba-MEBG)
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