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Kenya’s exports grow, defy Covid-19 hurdles

Kenya recorded a 15.6 percent increase in total exports for the January-August period to 490 billion shillings (about 4.37 billion U.S. dollars) from some 3.78 billion dollars recorded during the same period in 2020, a government agency said in a report released on Tuesday.

Kenya Export Promotion and Branding Agency (KEPROBA) attributed the rise in export earnings to the country’s effort to decrease its dependence on volatile agricultural markets.

“The easing of COVID-19 restrictions in our export destination markets has also been a blessing,” said Wilfred Marube, CEO of the agency.

Marube said Kenya has attempted to diversify its exports.

According to statistics released by KEPROBA, key export products include horticulture, tea, apparel and clothing, coffee, mineral ore, petroleum oil products, animal and vegetable fats, machinery and parts, iron and steel products as well as pharmaceuticals.

Kenya’s top export markets include Uganda, Netherlands, USA, UK, Pakistan, Tanzania, United Arab Emirates, Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, and  Egypt.

Uganda continued to be the country’s largest exporter accounting for Sh14 billion of exports, Netherlands was second at Sh13 billion, D.R.C at Sh10billion while the US came fourth accounting for Sh7 billion.

Tanzania accounted for Sh5 billion, China (Sh4billion), India (Sh4billion), Ethiopia (Sh 3 billion), Zambia (Sh 3 billion), and Egypt (Sh2 billion).

Meanwhile, the US was the country that grew their interest the most in Kenyan products with the value of exports to the US growing by Sh3billion.

Exports to Ethiopia grew by Sh2.5 billion, Tanzania (Sh2.3 billion), Netherlands (Sh2 billion), Japan (Sh1.6billion), U.A.E. (Sh1.5billion), and China (Sh1.4 billion).

Kenya is banking on the opportunities presented at the ongoing Expo 2020 Dubai in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates.

The country is participating in the expo and is showcasing its best in tourism, trade, investments, culture, sports, among other key aspects.

Marube said the expo is Kenya’s gateway to grow exports not only to the Gulf region but to the rest of the world.


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