The MoU was signed between India’s Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and Kenyan Cabinet Secretary for Defence Aden Bare Duale
NEW DELHI: Kenyan President William Ruto will pay an official visit to India on December 5. India and Kenya are maritime neighbours. “Prime Minister Narendra Modi had visited Kenya in July 2016. This will be President Ruto’s first visit to India. His visit will further enhance bilateral relationship between the two nations, especially the defence and trade ties,” said a source.
On August 29 this year, Goa Shipyard Limited and Kenya Shipyard Limited had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for capacity building and collaboration in ship design and construction. The MoU was signed between India’s Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and Kenyan Cabinet Secretary for Defence Aden Bare Duale.
“Trade in local currencies will also be taken up for discussion during Ruto’s visit. He is likely to meet Prime Minister Modi and President Draupadi Murmu, among others,” the source added. India has been trading in local currencies with a few countries and has Vostro accounts with about 22 other nations, including Kenya. A Vostro account is an account that a correspondent bank holds on behalf of another bank.
An India-Kenya trade agreement was also signed in 1981, under which both the countries accorded the Most Favoured Nation status to each other. The India-Kenya Joint Trade Committee (JTC) was set up at the ministerial level in 1983 as a follow-up to this agreement. The JTC has met nine times since, the latest being in August 2019 in New Delhi.
India was Kenya’s largest trading partner in 2014-15 with bilateral trade to the tune of $4.235 billion. The main Indian exports to Kenya include petroleum products, pharmaceuticals, steel products, machinery, yarn, vehicles and power transmission equipment. The Kenyan exports to India include soda ash, leather, vegetables, tea and metal scrap.