Kenya to use WTO to spearhead post 2015 developmental agenda

Foreign Affairs CS Amina Mohamed (centre), PS Karanja Kibicho (left) and Statehouse spokesperson Manoah Esipisu address the press on WTO Conference that kicks off this week in Nairobi (Photo: David Njaaga)
Nairobi: Kenya is expected to leverage on the upcoming global trade conferences as the most appropriate means of delivering post-2015 development agenda.

The forums include the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) to be held in July 2016 and the World Trade Ministerial Conference (WTO) that starts this week.

Just by hosting the 10th WTO ministerial conference for the first time in African soil, there are expectations that the meeting will help inject at least Sh2.6billion into the Kenyan economy.

Some 5,000 delegates are expected to attend the conference, which over 25 countries have confirmed their participation.

Launching the WTO logo and website in May, President Uhuru Kenyatta said the incorporation of Africa into the ministerial Conference will complement efforts towards increasing intra-Africa trade which is notably low.

The UNCTAD XIV will bring together Heads of State and Government, ministers and other prominent players from the business world, civil society and academia to tackle global trade and economic development issues.

The Conference will also be a unique opportunity to consider the suitable way of achieving the set developmental agenda. It will also decide on UNCTAD’s programme of work.

Last time Kenya hosted the UNCTAD IV was in 1976.

According to a statement from State House Spokesman Manoah Esipisu, the conferences will be vital in formulating policies relating to all aspects of development including trade, aid, transport, finance and technology.

“This will be an opportunity for Kenya to yet again not only to host world leaders but also promote tourism in our country. Additionally, this will be a chance to move beyond business as usual and forge a strong global partnership to accelerate the implementation of the global development agenda,” read his statement.

In the agenda, Kenya plans to address health, inequality, growth and employment, environmental sustainability, food and security as well as governance.

In environmental sustainability, Kenya wants to promote adoption of renewable energy to increase access to affordable power.

World Trade OrganizationWTOUnited Nations Conference on Trade and Development