Kenya will resume the US-Kenya trade negotiations under President Joe Biden’s administration, Trade and Industrialization Cabinet Secretary Betty Maina said Monday.
The Kenya-US trade deal has already completed two rounds with hopes a deal will be signed ahead of the expiry of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) in 2025.
“We expect to get into more rounds of negotiations as the new administration settles down having already had two rounds,” the CS said on Monday.
In his congratulatory message to Joe Biden, the President elect, President Uhuru President Uhuru Kenyatta said Biden is a friend of Kenya whose last visit to the country while serving as Vice President under President Barack Obama helped renew Kenya-USA ties.
“His win therefore presents an even bigger and better platform for our two countries to collaborate more closely for the prosperity of the people of our two nations,” Uhuru said.
In July, Betty said the trade agreement once concluded, it would assist the continent by creating a reference upon which other African nations will negotiate bilateral arrangements within the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) framework in future.
According to its Proposed Kenya – United States of America Free Trade Area Agreement Negotiation Principles, Objectives, And Scope, its specific objective is to ensure that there is no disruption of Kenya’s market access into the USA after AGOA expires on September 30, 2025.
President Uhuru Kenyatta also reiterated Kenya’s determination to conclude ongoing negotiations with the U.S. and sign the Free Trade Agreement (FTA).
“We appreciate what has been achieved through AGOA, but it is time we moved to much more closer trade arrangements that are mutually beneficial. We will not lose focus on concluding the FTA,” the President said when he bade farewell to outgoing US Ambassador to Kenya, Kyle McCarter who paid him a courtesy visit at State House, Nairobi Tuesday.
3/3 The Head of State said the FTA will build on the successes achieved under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) by ushering in better and bigger trade opportunities and prospects for Kenya. pic.twitter.com/w4Z21lm7qC
— State House Kenya (@StateHouseKenya) January 19, 2021
Kenya and the US launched trade negotiations on 8th July 2020 with the aim of crafting a comprehensive FTA that will serve as a model for similar pacts across Africa.
President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration is scheduled for Jan. 20
Updated Tuesday 19/01/2021