Tuesday August 7, 2018
President Uhuru Kenyatta. FILE PHOTO | NMG
President Uhuru Kenyatta will hold talks with his US counterpart
Donald Trump on August 27 in Washington, the White House confirmed on
The meeting will focus on growing trade between
the two countries and finding a long-lasting solution to insecurity in
neighbouring Somalia and South Sudan.
between the two leaders will reaffirm the long-standing relationship
between the United States and Kenya as a cornerstone of peace and
stability in Africa and the broader Indo-Pacific region,” Mr Trump’s
press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement.
Trump and President Kenyatta will explore ways to bolster trade and
investment between the two countries, while strengthening security
Trade between the two countries is tilted towards the US, with
Nairobi buying goods worth Sh57.38 billion last year against exports –
largely textile and apparels – valued at Sh47.27 billion, official
Washington views Kenya as key in
strengthening its ties with Africa as Mr Trump appears to be moving to
mend fences with the continent he reportedly described as a collection
of “sh**hole” countries on January 11.
described Kenya as a “vital partner” of the US and that Mr Trump was
looking forward to “discussing ways to broaden the strategic partnership
based on our shared democratic values and mutual interests”.
Trump administration has been warming up to Nairobi in recent months,
with two high-powered delegation on trade and security holding talks
with top leadership in Nairobi.
The US Presidential
Advisory Council on Doing Business in Africa (PAC-DBIA) – a think-tank
which advises Mr Trump through his Commerce secretary Wilbur Ross –
pitched camp in Nairobi from June 27-29.
meeting culminated in signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU),
which set out a framework where Kenya and US authorities will be
engaging each other on investment opportunities. US-Africa Command
Commander Thomas Waldhauser also held talks with Mr Kenyatta on July 11
at State House focusing on security issues in war-torn South Sudan and
US Under-Secretary for Commerce Gil Kaplan,
who led the delegation of about 60 business executives, made it clear
American firms were keen on cutting deals with Nairobi under the
ambitious “Big Four” plan.
“Kenya is a wonderful
partner for further trade, development and commercial relations,” Mr
Kaplan said during the signing of the MoU.
been incredibly impressed by the sophistication and the thoroughness
that they have looked at the problems that they are facing.”
the “Big Four” plan state resources are being concentrated in
manufacturing, food security, healthcare and affordable housing as well
as enabling infrastructures such as roads, modern railway and power.