•Kenya is among the largest African producers and exporters of Avocados to China.
•Government plan to balance trade deficit will be boosted.
Fruits farmers in Kenya are set to reap more after China announced plans to expand imports from the continent.
This will help create a wider market share for the Kenyan agriculture products especially avocado which is one of the major agricultural exports to China.
In March, China cleared Kenya to export fresh avocado, a departure from the previous directive that restricted exports to frozen fruits only.
“Kenya was granted market access to export the frozen avocados to China, making Kenya the first African nation to export frozen avocados to China,"said Kenya Export Promotion and Branding Agency (KEPROBA), chief executive, Wilfred Marube.
He said Kenya is now among the largest African producers and exporters of Avocados to China.
Mwarube said China is working with Kenya to enhance production and supply capacities adding that this will drive growth in the agricultural sector and at the same time improve the country’s economy.
“The General Administration of Customs of the People's Republic of China (GACC) is working closely with relevant institutions in Kenya on matters plant health, in a bid to benefit from the China’s commitment of enhancing production and supply capacities,” Mwarube added.
Speaking during the 2022 China - Africa fruits promotion conference, China’s inspector of the department of commerce of Hunan Province, Chen Dayan, said the country is keen on importing more fruits from Africa.
“Innovation and best standard practices are the future of China-Africa co-operation. We look forward to importing more green, high quality African products to enhance the fruit industry,” Dayan said.
China has a large consumer base with a population of about 1.4 billion creating a demand for high quality fruits from Africa, Secretary general of China fruit marketing association, Cheng Lei said..
It has imported fruits from Kenya, South Africa, Tanzania and Egypt.
The Economic Survey 2022 shows Kenya’s trade deficit widened to Sh1.407 trillion in 2021 as the value of imports greatly outweighed export earnings.
It puts the value of imports at Sh2.151 trillion in 2021 up from Sh1.643 trillion in 2020, a 30.9 per cent growth.
This was mainly driven by a rise in petroleum product imports which accounted for Sh335.3 billion and industrial machinery Sh255.8 billion, with the total deficit growing from Sh999.9 billion in 2020.