Githae: Cargo traffic to solidify trade between America, East Africa region
SEE ALSO :Public relations firm Gina Din soldGithae said the lengthy travel time to the US and high cost of transporting produce via transit points such as Britain’s Heathrow and Holland’s Amsterdam airports would soon end. “Now, with direct flights, there will be enormous advantages. Kenyan flower exporters will no longer be subjected to ‘unnecessary’ levies at transit points." Kenya is America’s 85th largest goods trading partner with $1.5 billion (Sh150 billion) in total trade. Goods exported totalled $937 million (Sh93.7 billion) while imports hit $565 million (Sh56.5 billion). The US trade surplus with Kenya was $371 million (Sh37 billion) last year, according to the Office of the US Trade Representative. Githae said Americans had overtaken the British in tourism travel to Kenya and that the arrivals were more impressive than what Uganda and Tanzania received. He said non-stop flights would boost the hospitality industry.
SEE ALSO :KQ issues profit warningAccording to tourism statistics, 60 per cent of visitors to East Africa rely on air transport. However, an average 100,000 Americans visit Kenya annually despite a lack of direct flights. But he warned that the ongoing political stalemate in Kenya could roll back gains in trade and tourism. “Last week, three delegations headed for Kenya had to cancel their trip due to political anxiety. Two were trade delegations and one was by a university. If we don’t get our politics right, we will hurt the economy,” he warned.
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