The Kenya International Industrial Expo and Shandong Export Commodities Exhibition has officially opened its doors to potential buyers of Chinese products. This is a medium to advance trade interests, and build networks for future business partnerships, aligning well with the vision of shared prosperity. The expo will run for three days, starting today to Friday 19th November, 2021 At Sarit expo Centre in Nairobi.

The Chamber 1st Vice President, Dr. Erick Rutto represented Kenya National Chamber of Commerce & Industry (KNCCI) during the opening ceremony where he indicated that such exhibitions open opportunities for everyone to see solutions offered by the Kenyan market. This could be investment prospects or even access to quality brands. He amplified the Chamber’s ambition of enhancing international relations by advocating for enhancement of international trade with other states since this is a key contributor of mutual relationship and understanding.

Kenya’s infrastructure is well developed improving the ease of doing business. With the population of about 46.7 million, Kenya offers a ready market for fast moving consumer goods and has skilled and multi-talented human resource. Additionally, the Kenyan Government envisions to transform the economy to middle income status by 2030. Trade and Investment sector is expected to contribute significantly towards the attainment of the Vision 2030 goals, considering its strong emphasis on export-led and private sector driven growth strategy.

Between 2007-2020, total trade between Kenya and China grew more than eighty-fold from USD 471.6 million in 2007 to USD 3.42 billion in 2020.  But the trade is heavily skewed in favor of China. In 2020, Kenya exported goods worth USD 134.8 million to China and imported goods worth USD 3.29 billion. In reference to this Dr. Rutto acknowledged that much needs to be done for Kenya to scale up economically and that such Expo’s contributes to this.

Dr. Erick Rutto recognized and appreciated the Chinese government support towards Kenya Development programmes highlighting that much has been achieved in the Country’s infrastructure sector courtesy of Chinese support. He therefore stated that it is important for the two governments to continue working closely for mutual benefits.

He also appreciated the Kenyan companies that took part in the expo, some of the companies were; UBA Bank KE, Stawi Foods, AfriKapu, Harriet Botanicals,  Mace Foods, Hygiene Rix, GearBox, Essies Flavours, Meishan Crafts, Cafematz Coffee, Arigiene Ltd (Hygiene rix)- Hygiene,Mount Kenya Specialty  Tea and Coffee Ltd, Soin Honey, Investera+ Africa, among others.

Looking at exports, Kenya exports mainly; Ores and concentrates of base metals, Petroleum oils and Vegetable oils. Others are textile fibers, Leather, Manufactures of base metal, Crude vegetable materials, Tea and mate, among others.

This Expo brings together over ninety (90) companies from China who will be exhibiting at the 3 days event.It  is a fitting launch-pad for growing trade cooperation between China and Africa and an important signal to the world that China remains open for business despite the growing wave of trade protectionism.