Remarks by Mr.LI Xuhang Charge'd Affaires of Chinese Embassy in Kenya at the Reception for CIIE
Honorable Amb. Johnson Weru, Director of Economic Affairs and Commercial Diplomacy,
Officials from Kenya Export Promotion Council and Partnership for Investment and Growth in Africa (PIGA-ITC),
Kenyan exhibitors participating the China International Import Expo,
Friends from media, think tanks,
Ladies and gentlemen,
On behalf of the Chinese Embassy, I would like to extend my warmest welcome and congratulations to the Kenyan exhibitors who have participated and yielded substantial fruits from the First China International Import Expo.
A few days ago, the first CIIE was successfully concluded in Shanghai. In just 6 days, the event gathered more than 3,600 exhibiting companies, 400,000 purchasers and government officials from 172 countries, regions and international organizations across the world. Fruitful commercial results were reached, with total trade deals of 57.83 billion USD on a yearly basis. The huge success of the world’s first import expo ever, has fully demonstrated China’s determination to further open up, and the world’s strong desire to strengthen cooperation and promote global trade. We firmly believe that this pioneering initiative will usher in a new phase of global trade where free trade and multilateral trade system will be safeguarded, and an innovated and inclusive global economy will be built further for the common prosperity of all parties.
I am proud to see that Kenya is among the biggest winners of the CIIE, and our bilateral economic and trade cooperation has gained new strong momentum. H.E. President Uhuru Kenyatta went to China and held a successful bilateral meeting with H.E. President Xi Jinping for the second time this year. The two presidents, together with other heads of state who attended the expo, toured the Kenyan National Pavilion where Kenyan tea, coffee, flowers, macadamia, and tourism were showcased. During the expo, China and Kenya signed two MOUs, one on the establishment of a working group on promoting trade and the other on cooperation on the Sanitary and Phytosanitary measures, which paves the way for Kenyan agricultural products to enter the Chinese market. The two sides also signed an SPS agreement on the export of Kenya’s Stevia to China.
I’m very glad to know that the Kenyan exhibitors have achieved remarkable results during the expo. Their products including tea, coffee beans, honey, grains, have attracted great attention of Chinese buyers. Trade orders worth of millions of dollars have been made during the expo, and more business intentions are underway. Here I would like to particularly draw your attention to the great potential of China-Kenya trade cooperation. China has a big market of over 1.3 billion people, and it is our sincere commitment to open the Chinese market. In the coming 15 years, China’s import of goods is expected to exceed US$30 trillion. On the other hand, Kenya boasts a variety of unique and good quality products which are much needed by China’s big market. Therefore there’s much to do ahead to fully tap the potential and bring tangible results for the Kenyan and Chinese people.
Apart from expanding Kenyan export to China, the CIIE has also provided an excellent platform for Kenya to attract Chinese investment. Guangdong Silk-Tex Group of China, has announced its plans to set up a silk processing plant and a silk farm in Kenya, which are expected to create over 300,000 jobs for Kenyans. Right after the Expo, 3 big Chinese delegations are coming to Kenya for business and investment opportunities. They are organized respectively by the Council of Promoting South-South Cooperation, Provincial Governments of Anhui and Zhejiang, and there will be altogether 200 entrepreneurs coming along with these 3 delegations. I am fully confident that China-Kenya economic and trade cooperation will be elevated to a much higher level which will ensure a greater sense of fulfillment for people of all walks.
Today we have representatives of exhibitors here. I can’t wait to hear about your stories and achievements at this expo, and your commercial ambitions to tap the Chinese market.
Friends from media, I encourage you to tell the public more about the inspiring stories of those business men and women, the vast opportunities offered for Kenyan products, China’s readiness to increase imports and investment, and most importantly the mutually beneficial nature of China-Kenya cooperation.
Friends from the Kenyan business community and the Kenyan Government, I humbly request you to take concrete measures to create a safer, more convenient and more attractive investment environment, so to attract more Chinese investment. China is ready to help increase the value and competitiveness of Kenyan products and expand imports from Kenya.
Ladies and gentlemen,
The first CIIE is just a good beginning. The future of our bilateral cooperation is very bright, and we have to seize the prime opportunity and roll up our sleeves to work harder, for more Kenyan products to enter Chinese market, for more Chinese investment to come to Kenya, and most importantly for more tangible benefits to the lives of Kenyans and Chinese. We should all be proud that we are among those who are making it happen. Thank you!