Mauritius lifts ban on Kenyan farm produce

PORT LOUIS, The government of Mauritius has lifted a ban on several Kenyan farm produce as the two countries signed agreements to enhance trade between them.

The ban on avocados, baby carrots, baby beans and broccoli was lifted during bilateral talks between President Uhuru Kenyatta and his host Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth.

The move by Mauritius comes less than six months after the Chinese government opened its doors to the Kenya’s fresh produce.

Kenyatta said the lifting of the ban by Mauritius will help improve Kenya’s export to the Indian Ocean Island country and is a major boost for horticultural farmers in the country especially women who are the majority in the sector.

During the bilateral talks, Kenyatta and Jugnauth witnessed the signing of several agreements including the Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA); an Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (IPPA); and an MOU on Cooperation for the Development of Special Economic Zones (SEZs) and Export Processing Zone in Kenya.

Other agreements were an MOU in the field of Tourism; an MOU in the field of Higher Education and Scientific Research and an MOU in the field of Arts and Culture.

Kenyatta said Kenya is bound to benefit immensely from the signed agreements and MOU’s as they would help the country achieve its development goals particularly in manufacturing and job creation.

Both countries can benefit from the proximity of each other to foster closer cooperation across many areas. I welcome the conclusion and signing of agreements in six areas during this state visit, the President said.

He pointed out that more bilateral engagements between Kenya and Mauritius will enhance existing cordial relations thereby increasing trade and investment opportunities.

The President said, several opportunities exist in trade and investment, financial services, agriculture, transport and communication, and in culture, education, tourism and research.

The Kenyan Head of State said there is need for the two countries to explore ways of enhancing cooperation in maritime transport by linking Port Louis to the Port of Mombasa as a catalyst for growing business and trade between Kenya and Mauritius.

He invited Mauritian investors to participate in the Special Economic Zones which the government has set up at the Port of Mombasa and within the Export Processing Zones.

The President called on the Mauritius government to partner with Kenya in combating transnational crimes which are a threat to peace and security in the Indian ocean.

As chair of the Indian Ocean Commission (IOC), Mauritius can help steward the regional fight against piracy, money laundering, and drug trafficking, which are threatening peace and security in the Indian Ocean, said the President.

.He further requested Mauritius to support Kenya’s bid for a non-permanent seat in the United Nations Security Council for the term 2021 to 2022 at the elections to be held this year.

Jugnauth thanked Kenyatta for the historic visit which makes the Kenyan leader the first Kenyan President to visit Mauritius.

He said as an economic power house in the East African region, Kenya is one of the main trading partners of Mauritius adding that President Kenyatta’s visit marks the beginning of a new era as the country prepares to start import Kenyan farm produce.

Source: NAM News Network