NAIROBI, KENYA: The government and other States in the region are reviewing barriers hindering trade in the region, Industrialization Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya has said.
The CS raised concern that local traders from the region are not benefiting from available market of over 150 million people due to trade barriers imposed thus affecting their economies.
“We want to improve our economy through tapping into Small and Medium Enterprise (SMEs) sector. There are incentives for the segment to engage in business across East and Central Africa (EAC) but the markets cannot be easily accessed because of trade barriers,” said Munya.
The CS was categorical that EAC member states should compete with the rest of the world and raise their economic standards saying this can be effectively achieved through a review of trade barriers.
Speaking in Eldoret during the official opening of the 19th East Africa Jua Kali/Nguvu kazi Edition, the CS said the state has continued promoting SMEs and they have been benefiting from loans and encouraged them to work towards enriching their economies.
He added; “We are in plans to ensure that SMEs become drivers of our economy and industrial revolution. This can be achieved through training and building more capacity.”
The CS stated that counties should play a key role in economic empowerment through provision of facilities and space for all industry players.
In attendance was Tanzania ambassador to Kenya Pindi Hazara Chana who said SMEs if supported will eventually play a major role in economic transformation.
She noted a ready market for products from EAC and urged member states to continue engaging in exports and imports of genuine goods.
Uasin Gishu governor Jackson Mandago, Trade PS Dr Chris Kiptoo, EAC PS Dr Susan Komen among other dignitaries from EAC attended the exhibition.