Irish DPM in Nairobi for talks
Republic of Ireland is seeking to increase its trade investment in Kenya, as the European country eyes the African continent. Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Trade and Foreign Affairs Eamon Gilmore says he is in Nairobi to discuss business opportunities between his country and Kenya. "As part of the roll out of the Africa Strategy, I launched alongside with the minister for agriculture, a new initiative to attract a major agri-food companies from Ireland to Africa. This programme will focus on the markets in Kenya and Tanzania in its pilot phase," Gilmore said. The Irish Agro-Food Development fund is worthy 2 million pounds with Kenya being among the key beneficiaries of the fund.
The Irish DPM said that his countrymen had indicated their willingness to invest in Kenya saying that a number of big businesses are planning to visit Nairobi. Gilmore was speaking at a Nairobi hotel yesterday morning during a breakfast meeting also attended by Nairobi Metropolitan minister Jamleck Kamau, and Foreign Affairs minister Sam Ongeri.
Kamau said Kenya and Ireland enjoy a cordial bilateral relationship anchored in the economic, cultural and historical ties but regretted that the volume of trade between the two countries has been relatively low. "In 2011, Kenya's exports to Ireland were valued at Sh1 billion, while imports were worthy Sh5.3 billion mainly from coffee, pharmaceutical products, IT software, medical equipment and processed food beverages. This trade can be expanded by diversification of products and extension of trade volumes and values."
Kamau said that Irish investors have many investment opportunities in the field of tourism, agriculture, transport and infrastructure, ICT, communications, mining, energy , housing and manufacturing. "The latest discovery of oil in Northern Kenya has been the latest pointer to a metro stable economy and will greatly improve the country's competitiveness. The Irish oil company Tullow discovered oil in Turkana," Minister Kamau said.