Invest in Kenya: East Africa’s Powerhouse
Kenya is the largest and most advanced economy in East and Central Africa. Its GDP accounts for more than 50 per cent of the region’s total and in terms of current market prices, its 2014 GDP stood at $58.1 billion.
Kenya’s strong growth prospects are supported by an emerging middle class and an increasing appetite for high-value good and services.
Kenya’s favorable business environment and strong economy has allowed many companies to reduce operation costs and thus growing their profit margin.http://www.invest.go.ke/why-invest-in-kenya/
Our Top Export Products Kenya
Kenya is a tropical East African country with a wide diversity of climate and geographic regions. This diversity allows many crops to be introduced and grown successfully. Tea production has contributed significantly to the Kenyan economy and it will continue to do so. Tea growing in Kenya: Tea is mainly grown in several districts which include Kericho, Bomet, Nandi, Kiambu, Thika, Maragua, Muranga, Sotik, Kisii, Nyamira, Nyambene, Meru, Nyeri, Kerinyaga, Embu, Kakamega, Nakuru and Trans-nzoia. In these areas the crop enjoys 80% favorable weather patterns. As indicated earlier production is shared between multinational companies and small-scale growers. Both sectors have benefited from many scientific advances in tea cultivation, although the average yields in the small scale sector are below those in the estates sector which stands at around 1800 kg ha-1. Despite the yield disparities, the small-scale sector has managed to achieve higher quality standards resulting in consistently higher auction prices. The industry is the largest employer in the private sector, with more than 80,000 people working on the estate and about 3 million people earning their livelihood from the sector. The Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA): Kenya Tea Development Agency’s predecessor the Kenya Tea Development Authority, was established in 1964 by an act of parliament as a parastatal charged with the responsibility of developing and fostering the young and nascent small scale growers sector. From one initial factory serving 19,000 growers and only 4,700 ha of tea, today KTDA has 51 factories spread in 24 districts. The factories are owned by 380,000 growers who cultivate 92,800 ha of tea.
Agriculture is the backbone of Kenya’s economy and the coffee industry has been one of the key pillars of the country’s economic development for decades. The coffee sub-sector contributes annually an average of US$230 million in foreign exchange earnings and is ranked as Kenya’s fourth most important export, after horticulture, tourism and tea. This key role is recognized in the Government’s efforts to fight poverty and is central to the agricultural sector’s contribution towards the realization of Kenya’s Vision 2030, which is the country’s blueprint premised on three pillars and in the Big 4 Government Agenda. Kenya prides itself as a producer of superior quality coffee, largely due to positive attributes arising from favourable growing conditions: well-distributed rainfall, high altitude (1,500– 2,000 metres above sea level), moderate temperatures and deep red volcanic soils. In addition, the method of processing the coffee for the market contributes significantly to the above-mentioned attributes. The Kenyan coffee sector is under the auspices of the Coffee Directorate, one of eight Directorates of the Agriculture and Food Authority (AFA). The AFA is a government agency under the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Irrigation and is responsible for the development, regulation and promotion of scheduled crops as provided for in the Crops Act of 2013.
The farming and trading in herbs and spices such as chives, mint, coriander, basil, rosemary and sage among others in Kenya is on the rise thanks to the hiked demand in both the local and international markets that has seen farmers and trades take the venture seriously than before.
According to the growers and dealers, some of these herbs had gone into extension as farmers turned to grains and cereals production. However, of late farmers are taking the venture back on realising its lucrative markets with stable market price as compared to other produce.
In 2012, the sub-sector contributed kshs.4.9 billion accounting for less than 2 per cent of the total value of the domestic horticulture. Same year, the area under herbs and spices was 17,301 acres with a production of 152 tonnes.
Herbs and spices such as garlic is a viable rotational crop for production under green house. Cultivation of herbs and spices is dominated by smallholder farmers. Onion was the largest contributor to this sub- sector with 62 per cent followed by spring onion, bixa and garlic.
Some of the most common herbs, spices, medicinal and aromatic plants include; green bunching onions(allium fistulosum), bulb onions(allium cepa L), African bird eye chili(capsicum frutescens),Long cayenne(capsicum annum), bullet chillies (capsicum annum), coriander (coriandrum), garlic (allium sativum), leeks (allium ampeloprasum), moringa(moringaoleifera), cucri, ginger, jatropha, rosemary and Bixa(bixaorellana).
Others are stinging nettle (urticadioica), stevia (stevia rebaudiana), aloe Vera, bitter leaf (vernonia), bitter orange, guava, papaya, xylopiaaethiopica, basil, cinnamon (Cinnamonumverum), sage, lavender, black pepper, dill and thyme.
Kenya’s economy largely relies on the agriculture sector. Horticulture sub-sector is one of the top foreign exchange earners for the country generating approximately US $ 1 billion annually. In 2015, the sub-sector contributed 1.45% to the national GDP while flower exports contributed 1.01% was from the flower industry. It has grown in significance to a vibrant flower industry worldwide.
It has recorded growth in volume and value of cut flowers exported every year from 10,946 tons in 1988 compared to 86,480 tons in 2006, 120,220 tons in 2010 136, 601 tons in 2014 and 122,825 in 2015. According to Horticultural Crop Directorate (HCD) in 2015, the floriculture industry earned Kenya Shillings 62.9 billion.
Kenya is the lead exporter of rose cut flowers to the European Union (EU) with a market share of 38%. Approximately 50% of exported flowers are sold through the Dutch Auctions, although direct sales are growing. In the United Kingdom, supermarkets are the main outlets. Over 25% of exported flowers are delivered directly to these multiples, providing an opportunity for value addition at source through sleeving, labelling and bouquet production. Kenya flowers are sold in more than 60 countries.
It is estimated that in Kenya, over 500,000 people, including over 100,000 flower farm employees depend on the floriculture industry impacting over 2 million livelihoods.
The main production areas are around Lake Naivasha, Mt. Kenya, Nairobi, Thika, Kiambu, Athi River, Kitale, Nakuru, Kericho, Nyandarua, Trans Nzoia, Uasin Gishu and Eastern Kenya. Kenya Flower Council Members.
In February 2021, the export value of fruits from Kenya increased to nearly 1.7 billion Kenyan shillings (KSh), around 15.8 million U.S. dollars. This was the highest value since May, when fruit exports reached a peak of 5.6 billion KSh (approximately 52 million U.S. dollars). The giant increase in that month might be related to effects of the coronavirus pandemic in Europe, as the shortage of fruits and vegetables in the region may have boosted the demand for Kenya’s horticulture production.
Kenya is a leading exporter of fruit juice in East Africa and could become dominant in other African markets. Exports of fresh passion fruit to Uganda and fresh mango to Tanzania have also increased significantly over the past three years due to favourable climatic conditions and suitable varieties.
Mangoes, avocadoes and passion fruit are the most important export fruits from Kenya to South Africa and the Middle East markets. These crops are of strategic importance as they provide cash income, contribute significantly to the nutrition and household food budgets of producers.
The production of fruits of Kenya increased from 544,110 tonnes in 1970 to 4 million tonnes in 2019 growing at an average annual rate of 5.38%.
According to a study of the African market for Kenyan processed fruit products, the country is well positioned to expand production of the three main tropical fruits which include mango, pineapple and passion.
Kenya has seen a burst of investor interest as global demand for precious metals and minerals has risen in recent years. However, as with many extractive markets elsewhere around the world, the country’s regulatory framework has been subject to a number of amendments over the past two years.
Perhaps the single biggest change was the establishment of a new Ministry of Mining, which was set up in April 2013, taking over responsibilities from the Ministry of Environment, with former MP Najib Balala installed as the first minister. A new mining bill, which will replace the Mining Act of 1940, is still awaiting final passage but once approved it will vest the new ministry with a range of new oversight powers and improve transparency in the licensing process.
The ministry has already moved to tighten enforcement, following the revocation of 42 prospecting and mining licences awarded between January and May 2013, stating that proper licensing procedures may not have been respected.
Kenya exports of pearls, precious stones, metals, coins to United States was US$2.32 Million during 2020, according to the United Nations COMTRADE database on international trade.