By Patrick Githinji
Local investors should engage in business ventures that target the wider east African market, Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KNCCI) has said.
KNCCI chairman David Githeere urged the manufacturers and traders to take advantage of the larger EAC and Common Market for East and Southern Africa (Comesa) by offering competitive prices and quality products.
Speaking during the opening of the 13th Kenya International Trade Exhibition at KICC, Githeere challenged investors to strengthen their operations to compete internationally, as the country gets into a common regional market.
"The large turnout of 32 countries at the exhibition is a testimony of the potential the region and Africa offers," said Mr Githeere.
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He said local industries should take the challenge by either getting into joint ventures or transfer of technology.
Trade Minister Amos Kimunya said the country was opening its doors to international investors as long as their activities do not threaten Kenya ’s national security and its strategic industries and products. In a speech read on his behalf by Director of Trade George Muosa, the minister underscored the need for the country to partner with the rest of the world in promoting trade.
"This exhibition offers major opportunities for franchising, distribution and partnerships with foreign investors," he said.
Mr Kimunya said foreign exhibitors representing manufacturers in their respective countries could also be interested in relocating excess production capacities to their export destinations.
"This creates potential for increased foreign investments through joint ventures that will boost and broaden production as well as increase demand for professional and infrastructure services," he said.