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Chinese Ambassador to Kenya H.E. Dr. Liu Xianfa said Friday that China is committed to the Kenyan market as the two countries signed a series of bilateral trade agreements – reflecting the Asian power’s bid to boost its presence in the country.
“This is the largest cooperation between China and Kenya that has brought over 200 investors from Guangdong province.
It is a win-win deal that will cement relations and benefit the two countries for many years to come,” said Mr. Liu during the China (Guangdong) – Kenya Economic and Trade and Cooperation conference in Nairobi.
During the Friday’s deal signing ceremony up to eight trade deals were passed between the two sides, with visiting Governor of Guangdong people’s Province, Zhu Xiao Dan saying “the agreements have a bilateral commercial engagement in sectors like infrastructure and construction, agriculture, tourism, mining and renewable energy.”
Mr. Xiao further urged the two trading partners to boost imports between them, with managing director of Kenya Investment Authority (KenInvest) Moses Ikiara saying, “Kenya was open and ready for business.”
The dual trading partners have two-way commerce totaling over Sh120.6 billion as at last year. In 2015, the value of China’s exports to Kenya grew by 62 per cent or 12.7 per cent of total imports. China is Kenya’s largest source of foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and second partner after India.
It is estimated that in 2013, China’s cumulative direct investment in Kenya had soared to US$474million and during the same year the bilateral trade volume had risen to US$8.4billion.
In 2013, President Uhuru Kenyatta visited China and held talks with his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jingping, with the talks yielding deals worth (US$5 billion).
The Premier of China, Li Keqiang visited Nairobi on his 2014 Africa tour. He and President Kenyatta witnessed the signing of 17 multi-billion deals to fund multiple infrastructural projects and various agreements, which included the establishment of a China-Africa Development Bank.
The conference comes barely days following the completion of a two-day TICAD forum in Nairobi which was aimed at strengthening trade ties between Japan and Africa.