DEAL

Kenya - US finalising details of direct cargo flights pact

In Summary
  • The US Embassy revealed this yesterday at a media briefing on economic issues touching on the two countries, saying the deal is a significant step.
  • Top Kenya's exports to US in 2019 included apparel $454 million, edible fruits and nuts $55 million, titanium and concentrates $52 million and coffee $34 million.
U.S. President Donald Trump speaks as he meets with Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington, U.S., August 27, 2018. REUTERS
U.S. President Donald Trump speaks as he meets with Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington, U.S., August 27, 2018. REUTERS

Kenya and US are finalising the agreement for direct cargo flights through diplomatic notes.

US Embassy officials yesterday told a media briefing on economic issues touching on the two countries that the deal is a significant step.

''The amendment to the US – Kenya Air Transport Agreement in Washington, DC last month will come to force following an exchange of diplomatic notes at the end of the week or early next week,'' deputy economic counsellor US Department of State Chris Angelis said.

 

She said that although direct flights between Kenya and US commenced in 2018, it did not include the seventh-freedom traffic rights for all cargo operations to the bilateral air transport agreement.

According to US, the rights in the amendment facilitates the movement of goods throughout the world by providing air carrier greater flexibility to meet their cargo and express delivery customers' needs more effectively.

Trade data released by the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) for the 11 months to November last year showed that the US imported Kenyan goods worth Sh46.4 billion compared to Sh44 billion over a similar period in 2018.

This made the US the second biggest market of Kenyan products behind Uganda (Sh49 billion) in the period to November 2019.

Goods worth Sh55.1 billion travelled the opposite direction in the 11-month period registering a 10.4 percent growth compared to Sh49.9 billion spent on American imports over the same period in 2018.

Top Kenya's exports to US in 2019 included apparel $454 million, edible fruits and nuts $55 million, titanium and concentrates $52 million and coffee $34 million.

The US on other hand exported aircraft worth $59 million, plastic $58 million, machinery $41 million and wheat $27 million.

 
 

The US Embassy also disputed claims that its trade pact with Kenya could undermine East Africa Community (EAC) and the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA).

''The trade pact between Kenya and US is a model to post Agoa trade arrangement with the continent. US has also engaged the continental body,'' the US Embassy team said.