The government of Kenya is set to develop a Jumuiya market in Busia County to boost cross-border trade, following a partnership with Trade Mark East Africa (TMEA) towards the project.
East African Community (EAC) Principal Secretary Kevit Desai who was flanked by Busia Governor Sospeter Ojaamong and Matayos legislator Geoffrey Odanga on Wednesday erected a beacon on the 40 acre piece of land donated by the County Government for the market at Marachi estate.
The Sh 1.4million border market is part of the government’s vision of empowering communities straddled along the Kenya-Uganda border to trade safely, legally and profitably across the EAC partner states. It is also aimed at enhancing livelihoods, structure trade, formalize informal trade and enhance revenue collection by improving the cross border trading environment.
Suitable place for value addition
“The project targets to transform the lives of Busia County residents and neighbouring counties by providing a suitable environment to participate in cross border trade under the EAC Common Market Protocol,” said Desai.
Upon completion, the market is set to provide a suitable place for value addition within the manufacturing sector and the agricultural value chains targeting the EAC, The Horn of Africa and Central African countries which are keen to join the EAC trading bloc.
“The idea of the Cross-Border Market was mooted in 2015 when we hosted the then British High Commissioner to Kenya, Christian Turner. My administration is ready to offer any necessary support to ensure the market is completed within the set time frame. Let us all also support the initiative which will create jobs for our youths and expand market for our agricultural products,” said Governor Ojaamong.
Due to increased business with Uganda, Tanzania and Rwanda, Kenya’s trade registered an increment of 4.7% in 2018, with Uganda remaining Kenya’s biggest trading partner accounting for 28.6% of her total exports to Africa