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European Union will not cut aid to Kenya

19 March 2014, 10:44

Nairobi - A European Union delegation visiting Kenya has refuted claims that the bloc was planning to reduce aid to the country over its trade relations with Asia.

The delegation however cautioned Kenya against compromising the Africa- EU cooperation at the expense of “looking east.”

Lodewijk Briet, EU’s head of delegation to Kenya insisted on the importance of the EU to Kenya in terms of trade.

He said that as of 2012 alone, Kenya made almost a quarter of its exports to the EU.

“That represents an amount of KES120 billion,” said Briet.

Briet said that compared to China or India which, are often depicted as crucial trading partners locally, the EU remained committed to trade with Kenya and East Africa more.

“The exports to China and India are less than two percent of Kenya’s total exports,” said Briet.

Briet was speaking in Nairobi ahead of the April Africa-EU summit that will be held in Brussels. President Uhuru Kenyatta is expected to attend the intercontinental high-level meeting.

The delegation's sentiments meanwhile come at a time when Kenya and most other African countries are continually looking east, a term that refers to African countries seeking improved ties with  countries like China and Japan for aid and funding of development projects.

The controversial Standard Gauge railway is one such project.

It has been funded by a government to government loan China extended to Kenya through the Chinese Exim bank.

-CAJ News

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