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Kenya strengthens bilateral relations with India

Kenya and India have agreed to work jointly to combat Covid -19 with emphasis on the need for equitable and affordable access to vaccines and ensuring treatment for all.

Speaking during a joint wrap-up press briefing after a three-day visit to Kenya by the External Affairs Minister of India, Dr Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, CS for Foreign Affairs Amb Raychelle Omamo, said they have noted the mutual desire to expand bilateral cooperation under the Kenya-India Joint Commission Framework.

“During our discussions we agreed to continue to strengthen our relations through structured and systematic engagements,” said Omamo.

The CS said the two countries have also agreed to work together to enhance partnership through exploring further opportunities both in the government and private sector in the areas of Health, Environment, ICT, Tourism, Higher Education, Automotive, Defence and Security.

In their meeting, Omamo noted that India is one of Kenya’s leading source of Foreign Direct Investment thus making Kenya welcome further investments from the Indian Private Sector, particularly in manufacturing, agro-processing, pharmaceuticals, automobile and affordable housing.

In the health sector, she said both sides welcomed the ongoing discussions on establishing joint ventures in pharmaceutical manufacturing which she says will contribute to the increasing provision of affordable drugs.

“We have agreed to explore prospects for further enhancement of cooperation in the healthcare delivery,” added Omamo.

The CS said they noted that terrorism in all its forms and manifestations are a common threat to humanity and hence agreed that enhancement and sharing of capabilities and awareness were for the mutual interest.

Further, the two sides have expressed satisfaction with their ongoing collaboration in the United Nations Security Council during the 2021-2022 term.

Omamo said both sides held extensive exchanges on global and regional issues, including the security situation in the Indo-Pacific region and the Horn of Africa and expressed their concern at the growing radicalization and the increase in international terrorism and violent extremism in parts of Africa and Asia.

On his side, Dr. Jaishankar expressed his appreciation for the warm hospitality accorded to them for the three- days visit to Kenya.

Jaishankar recognized the ‘Big Four’ agenda of Kenya on Manufacturing, Affordable Housing, Universal Health and Food Security and underlined that India will further build upon its partnership taking these development goal into account.

Both sides agreed that the fourth meeting of the Joint Commission will be held in India at a date to be agreed upon through the diplomatic channels.

By Catherine Muindi

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