Kenya is looking to deepen its bilateral ties with South Africa. The East African country’s President, Uhuru Kenyatta is on a three-day visit that will see him hold talks with his counterpart, Jacob Zuma to boost cooperation in a wide range of areas including trade, security and infrastructure development.
President Kenyatta and President Zuma will seek to review the progress in the implementation of earlier signed agreements and explore new areas to deepen the fraternal ties between Kenya and South Africa.
Kenya and South Africa have concluded over 16 instruments of cooperation, agreements, Memoranda of Understanding and letters of intent on training.
According to a report from the Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA), South Africa has increased its operations in Kenya’s market in the last 10 years to become the fifth largest source of imports. SA shipped Ksh73.8 billion ($810 million) worth of goods from Kenya in 2011.
The Authority is a division of Transnet Limited and is mandated to control and manage all eight commercial ports on the 2954km South African coastline
At the time, Kenya only managed to export just Ksh2.8 billion ($31 million) worth of goods. However, more recent reports show that the rapid growth of imports from South Africa is driven mainly by demand, not cordial bilateral relations.
A number of South African companies have operations in Kenya, operating in sectors such as banking, insurance, accountancy, pharmaceuticals, retail, tourism and engineering.