HE Mr. Uhuru Kenyatta, Hon’ble President of Republic of Kenya, encouraged the Indian companies and investors to work closely and in a transparent manner with their counterparts in Kenya for the successful collaboration and prosperity of the two countries.
Speaking at a business meeting organized by CII, FICCI & ASSOCHAM here today, President Kenyatta said that India being the second largest source of input in Kenya has presence in various industries like textile, Pharma, Medicine, Blue economy etc.India and Kenya have growing trade and commercial ties with bilateral trade amounted to $ 3.15 billion in 2015–2016 but with Kenyan imports from India accounting for $ 3.025 billion, the balance of trade is heavily in India’s favour.
With numerous MoU’s being signed between the two countries, there are some niche areas where both the countries stand to gain immensely with each other experience. Learnings for India from mobile money transfer platform of Kenya and Kenya could benefit from the experiences of India with Unique Identification number for citizens.
With improving rank in Ease of Doing business, well-educated and skilled resources, transparent Public Private Partnership models and E-Procurement, the President invited Indian companies to launch new initiative in Kenya. He also said that Kenya could be a Launchpad for many companies to expand in East and North Africa.
The President also unveiled plans to develop various cross country corridor for better connectivity in Kenya and focus on renewable energy which could provide huge opportunities for investors.
Mr Adan Mohamed, Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Industry Trade and Cooperatives, Republic of Kenya, also encourage inward investment into Kenya and assured the investors with a return of 20-25%. He announced the upcoming MoU of forming a Joint Business Council with FICCI in addition to the India-Kenya Joint Trade Committee (JTC) which was established in 1983. The India-Kenya Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA) makes it easier for business to plan their expansion.
Shri Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting, Government of India said that the growth of a country is reflective of its leaders, with case in point as Shri Narendra Modi and President Kenyatta who have led their countries towards a significant growth. He remarked that there exists a huge untapped potential for collaboration in the fields of Medicine, Agriculture, Pulses etc.
Mr R V Kanoria, Past President, FICCI & Chairman & Managing Director, Kanoria Chemicals Ltd, remarked that Kenya has a great business culture, environment and flourishing tourism industry. Frequent high level visits between the two countries has given a new impetus to the interest of India Inc and Kenyan businesses to make conscious effort for exploring the new avenues of collaboration keeping in mind needs and national interests of both the sides.
Mr Sunil Kanoria, President, ASSOCHAM & Vice Chairman, SREI Infrastructure Finance Ltd applauded the recently signed MoU which entails technical co-operation in creating affordable housing from locally available building materials and collaboration through training and experience sharing. Remarking on the similarity in demography for large number of youth in both countries, he expressed that the Skill India and Start up India Initiative have helped steer the youth in the right direction. Such initiatives could also be replicated in Kenya.
Mr S Kuppuswamy, Member, CII Africa Committee & Advisor, Group Finance & Spl. Projects , Shapoorji Pallonji Group Companies welcomed the President, dignitaries on the dias and the accompanying delegated to the session and applauded the leadership of President Kenyatta, where Kenya not only emerging as a power house of East Africa but also the second fastest growing economy of the entire continent. Indian industry attaches huge importance to this visit of President Kenyatta to India and expressed confidence that the road map provided through the interactions at this forum would go a long way in intensifying and deepening bilateral relations between our two countries.