Kenya Commercial Bank investment arm is seeking a piece of the Southern African market through a partnership with Botswana brokerage firm Motswedi Securities.
KCB Capital yesterday inked a deal with Motswedi that will see both firms trade and raise funds in Nairobi and the Botswana Stocks Exchanges.
The South African stockbroker firm's founder Martin Makgatlhe said discussions for a major project in Botswana were underway but could not reveal the value or specifics at the moment.
"We want to raise capital and investments in each other's market. For specific projects, we are in talks for one major project in Botswana and now that I am here we will also be looking at what opportunities are available in Kenya," Mr Makgatlhe said in Nairobi yesterday.
The firm is part of a delegation led by Botswana Minister for Investments, Trade and Industry, Vincent Seretse on a mission to Kenya. Mr Seretse signed a memorandum of Understanding with his Kenyan counterpart, Cabinet Secretary Aden Mohamed to boost trade between the two countries.
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This follows President Uhuru Kenyatta's July visit to the South African country to reignite trade that fell sharply last year.
In 2014, Kenya exported about $8.34 million (Sh847 million) worth of goods which fell drastically to $4.51 million (Sh458 million) last year. Botswana Investment and Trade Centre Chief Executive Officer Letsebe Sejoe said Kenyan companies should think of investing directly in the country in agriculture and manufacturing instead of relying on exportation alone.
"In Agriculture, we are net importers of almost everything except beef. We have about $7.2 billion (Sh731 billion) of imports so there is vast opportunities especially as we look at reviving manufacturing by bringing in expertise from primary production to value addition," Mr Sejoe said.
He added that the country has investor friendly regulations including 22 per cent corporate tax, no foreign ownership restriction, a double taxation agreement and the leeway to negotiate further concessions.
The over 20 companies and Government institutions' representatives accompanying the trade minister are also seeking opportunities in the country on the back of the entry of Botswana retailer Choppies which launched into the Kenyan market this year.