Government launches National Trade Negotiations Council and E-Trade Portal

The Ministry of Trade and Cooperatives has launched the National Trade Negotiations Council (NTNC) and the Kenya E-Trade Portal, a move that will enable the country’s business community to access global markets.

Trade and Cooperatives Cabinet Secretary (CS)Mr. Adan Mohamed said as trade negotiations in bilateral, regional and multilateral becomes more complex and competitive there is need to have an exhaustible consultations with all stakeholders to ensure that no one in the business fraternity is left behind.

Speaking during the launch at a Nairobi hotel Wednesday, the CS assured the country’s business community doing business in European countries that the market is solid; hence there should be no cause of alarm.

Mr. Adan told NTNC to ensure that the national interest remain at the core of all negotiations in the African growth and opportunity Act (AGOA), Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), East Africa Community (EAC) and other global negotiations.

We want to ensure as a country that we have one consistent programme that takes interest of the country, said Adan.

He said the Cabinet had approved the National Trade Policy to ensure the country has a coherent programme to deal with trade negotiations across the globe.

The portal that was developed in consultation with the business community to ensure that it meets their information also links businesses in the counties.

He urged the Council to look into trade issues in Zambia, China and India where trade markets have not been favourable to Kenya, noting that most Kenyans doing business in those countries are unable to access markets.

We want you to develop trade arrangements that are suitable for Kenya in those countries. Markets like Zambia is restricting milk products from Kenya, he noted.

Mr. Adan at the same time stated that this is the first time the country is having an inclusive team in the negotiation which includes civil society, private sectors and all stakeholders unlike before where key stakeholders were left out.

Adan said My ministry has developed the Portal to provide information on what the country can offer to the world in terms of export goods and services, as information is key in critical business decisions, said Adan.

He said the launch of the Kenya E-Trade Portal will improve the level of the business community, advertise the goods and services Kenya offers, as well as provide small and medium enterprises opportunities to navigate markets where they can sell their products.

To improve and enable our country to compete effectively in trade, the ministry has also developed a one stop shop where people across the world can source information, data and statistics.

The launch was also attended by Trade Principal Secretary Dr. Chris Kiptoo among others.

Source: Kenya News Agency