The Vice President of the Republic of Colombia Her Excellency Francia Elena Marquez Mina made a state visit to Kenya to enhance bilateral relations between Kenya and Colombia. She was hosted by the Deputy President Republic of Kenya H.E Rigathi Gachagua for economic discussions, which culminated in the signing of MoUs and Declarations for collaboration and cooperation.
These frameworks will offer a basis for working together in agriculture, health, affordable housing, culture, education and training, and sustainable tourism, among other areas.
To seal the bilateral relations The Kenya National Chamber of Commerce & Industry (KNCCI) in collaboration with Kenya Investment Authority (KenInvest ), Bogota Chamber of Commerce (Cámara de Comercio de Bogotá) and the Ministry of Investments, Trade and Industry (MITI) this afternoon hosted the Kenya- Colombia business forum at the Nairobi Serena Hotel.
The Chamber President Mr. Richard Ngatia in his key note address appreciated the Vice President of the Republic of Colombia for hosting him and the Kenyan business community during his visit early this year . He appreciated the Deputy President Republic of Kenya for being present during forum noting that iit showed government’s commitment and steadfast support to foster an enabling environment for improved trade relations between Kenya and Colombia.
He also appreciated the Ministry of Investments, Trade and Industry (MITI) Cabinet Secretary Hon. Moses Kuria for working tirelessly to address trade barriers for our vibrant business community to expand its access to global markets.
The noted that the visit is a manifestation of shared prosperity between the two countries with a history of economic resilience and are now leading markets in the respective Economic blocs. It is timely and strategic to build on the existing economic agreements, revitalize our trade relationship and explore greater avenues of economic collaboration.
He concluded by appreciating Republic of Colombia for supporting Kenya’s candidature as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council for the period 2021-2022 and the Colombian delegation for their attendance.
The Ministry of Investments, Trade and Industry (MITI) Cabinet Secretary, in remarks emphasized on strengthening of south to south relations which have increasingly become significant in recent decades as developing countries have gained economic influence. These relations provide opportunities for countries to leverage their shared experiences, resources, and expertise to address common challenges, promote sustainable development, and enhance their global standing especially In the coffee sector where both Colombia and Kenya thrive in.
The Deputy President Republic of Kenya appreciated all the policy makers, traders and business community for being present for the business forum , he noted that the business forum was an excellent platform to foster trade relations between the two countries .
The government of Kenya appreciates the cordial relationship between the two countries, which will poster government-to-government engagement for economic prosperity. To promote ease of doing business between the two countries the Government of Kenya will introduce direct flights to Colombia which will take a maximum of 6 hours compared to the 24 hours currently.
Kenya wishes to enhance cooperation with Colombia in other fields, such as training in Spanish, education-scholarships, healthcare, culture, south-south cooperation and engagements in the multi-lateral arena. Further, our Government is steadfast in increasing a two-way trade and investment cooperation between Kenya and Colombia. This is by prioritizing commercial programmes and promotion of business Interactions in the MSME’s, the Private Sector and Business Management Organizations.
He concluded by noting that Kenya looks forward to partnering with Colombia in creating linkages between African Diaspora in the Caribbean, Latin America, and North America.
There numerous areas of collaboration between Kenya and Colombia namely:
- Both Kenya and Colombia have strong agricultural sectors, with a focus on producing high-value crops such as coffee, tea, flowers, and fruits. Both countries can collaborate for technology transfer to improve productivity and sustainability.
- Colombia has expertise in hydroelectric power generation, has also been exploring renewable energy sources such as solar, and wind power.
- Both countries are well known for their natural beauty and diverse cultural heritage, making tourism a potential sector for collaboration. Collaboration in this sector can involve Sustainable Tourism: eco-tourism or community-based tourism projects. Marketing and Promotion: promote each other’s destinations and develop joint marketing campaigns. Infrastructure and Services: hotels, restaurants, and transportation systems. Adventure Tourism, eco-tourism and cultural exchanges.
- Kenya is known as a hub for technology and innovation in Africa, while Colombia has been investing in its technology sector in recent years. We both have growing technology sector, with startups and established companies’ alike working on innovative solutions in areas such as fintech and e-commerce.