KAM Engages Ministry of EAC on MPA 2024

In line with our four pillars – Global Competitiveness, Export-led Industrialization, SME Development, and Agriculture for Industry – we presented the Manufacturing Priority Agenda (MPA) to the Cabinet Secretary (CS) Ministry of East African Community, Arid and Semi-Arid Lands (ASALs), and Regional Development, Peninah Malonza, and Principal Secretary (PS) State Department for EAC, Mr Abdi Dubat. We discussed issues related to these pillars in detail, specifically in the context of the EAC.

CS Peninnah Malonza noted, “Our economy is predominantly driven by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). In fact, 80% of businesses in Kenya fall into the SME category. These enterprises are crucial as they are the primary creators of jobs, playing a key role in employment and economic growth across the country.”

PS Abdi Dubat emphasized, “If we are aiming for an export-based economy, we need to start at the manufacturing level, begin locally, then expand regionally, and eventually, internationally.”

KAM Chief Executive Anthony Mwangi stated, “We consider the East African Community (EAC) our domestic market. Our aim is to strengthen this market and be competitive. Through our Export-led Industrialization pillar, we are looking at how we can aggregate our goods to penetrate markets that we haven’t fully utilized.”

Other issues discussed included Non-Tariff Barriers (NTBs) and how to address these bottlenecks, as well as the need to review the Kenya-Tanzania bilateral meeting and establish action points and timelines for implementation. We also discussed the Finance Bill 2024 proposals and how to address existing duties and levies that hinder competitiveness.

The Ministry noted that it is working on the harmonization of domestic taxes to address some of these issues. Additionally, the ministry has created a multi-agency team to deliberate on how to improve and drive the competitiveness of Kenyan products within EAC markets.

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