Kenya to deepen trade and strategic ties with Seychelles
NAIROBI, 3 APRIL 2017, (PSCU) — Kenya and the Indian Ocean nation of Seychelles today entered a wide reaching agreement that will see the two countries expand their ties in trade and security.
The agreement was reached when President Uhuru Kenyatta held bilateral talks with President Danny Faure of Seychelles, who is on a historic State Visit to Kenya. Kenya is the first country that President Faure has visited since he became Head of State six months ago.
The bilateral meeting held at State House, Nairobi reached, a broad-based agreement that will see Kenya export more human capital and agricultural products to Seychelles.
President Faure said it makes more economic sense for his country to import beef and poultry from Kenya instead of countries like Brazil.
On its part, Seychelles will support Kenya in developing its maritime sector especially the fishing industry, which Kenya has paid little attention to since independence.
Speaking during a press briefing after their talks, President Kenyatta and President Faure announced that Seychelles will support Kenya to make the port of Mombasa to develop the capacity to act as a fish trans-shipment port.
The two President’s, who were joined by Deputy President William Ruto in the meeting, also reached a deal to have Kenya and Seychelles cooperate in tourism development by partnering the agencies managing the sectors in the respective countries.
President Kenyatta said Kenya and Seychelles each have tourism products they are famous for and it will make economic sense if they partnered to promote each other.
Kenya is known for its safari tourism while Seychelles is known for its beach destinations.
President Kenyatta also revealed that Seychelles wants to employ Kenyan teachers to join other Kenyans working in other sectors in the island nation.
As part of the efforts to enhance the close cooperation between the two nations, Kenya Airways will also increase its flights to Seychelles.
“It is both our ambitions and intention to ensure that we do everything that we can to deepen regional trade investment and to grow our regional economies by working together,” said President Kenyatta.
President Kenyatta said there a sizeable Kenyan diaspora in Seychelles and the Seychellois have long ties with Kenya.
“What we are doing now is to improve Government to Government ties,” said President Kenyatta as he thanked the important role Seychelles has played as a strategic security partner in dealing with piracy and drug trafficking.
President Faure said his visit to Kenya, the first state visit since he became President, “has a true meaning”.
He said his nation is ready to work with Kenya to develop its blue economy and to improve the security of its Exclusive Economic Zone.
“We can help you develop your fisheries sector and your defence sector specifically coast guard,” said President Faure, who hailed President Kenyatta for his leadership role in the continent.
He praised President Kenyatta for “putting in place development to transform the country” and “staying focused” despite the challenges.
“What your president is doing here he has been putting in place a development agenda to meet the new challenges of the Kenyan people,” said President Faure.
“It has not been easy for him but what is important is that he has remained focused on developing your country so that the people can reap the benefits of his new pragmatic way of dealing with the problems of Kenya.”
He also praised President Kenyatta for his leadership role in the African Union and his efforts to help Somalia regain normalcy
On tourism, he said he has reached a deal with President Kenyatta that Kenya and Seychelles will put a framework for a two-centre destination where the two countries will work jointly to promote their tourism products.
He said the renewed partnership between Kenya and Seychelles is informed by the fact that it is a new age and today Africa is different from the Africa of the 1950s.
“It is an era where we need more transformational leadership that can translate the freedom of our people into shared prosperity,” he said
Later, President Kenyatta hosted President Faure to a State Luncheon.
At the luncheon, President Kenyatta said Kenya is keen to learn from Seychelles in fishing especially in Tuna fishing and processing.
President Kenyatta said Kenya and Seychelles will continue standing together on issues of security as well as trade.
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