The Cabinet Secretary for the East African Community, Arid and Semi-Arid Lands and Regional Development Rebecca Miano has called for the inclusion of women entrepreneurs in trade and investment in the East African Community.
Speaking during the inaugural East African Women’s Business and Investment Forum 2023 in London, United Kingdom, the CS expressed her wishes for collaboration between Kenya and the UK through trade.
“I consider focus on women a confirmation that the spirit of gender complementarity has slowly but surely demolished myths that hitherto held certain chores as a preserve of one gender and a no-go zone for the other,” she said.
The CS outlined the EAC’s resources such as wildlife, beaches and arable land among others as “bountiful options for a plenitude of entrepreneurs and traders”.
“Covering roughly 4.8 million square kilometers, the EAC territory is home to about 285 million people with a mixed bag of richly bedecked cultures. The region had a combined GDP of about 240 billion Pound Sterling as at the year 2021,” she noted.
She listed the good state of transnational roads, modern ports, airlines, electricity and telecommunication as an added benefit to trade within the EAC stating the bloc’s commitment to facilitating unrestricted flow of goods, people and services.
“Export and import trade of a variety of agricultural produce and manufactured goods is liberalised. Intra-EAC trade has continued to grow with trends showing that each Partner State is gaining a significant share of the EAC market. In a nutshell, the business atmosphere in EAC is open to foreign investment,” she said.
She expressed hopes for bilateral trade and investment between Kenya and the UK through the women’s business forum.