DP William Ruto with Sudan President Omar al-Bashir

DP William Ruto with Sudan President Omar al-Bashir

Deputy President William Ruto held talks with Sudan President Omar al-Bashir in Khartoum, with focus to strengthen trade and investments between the two nations.

The leaders particularly stressed the need to enhance cooperation in areas of manufacturing, agro-processing, textiles and healthcare among other areas.

President Bashir and Mr Ruto agreed that Sudan and Kenya require agricultural and irrigation expertise to assist the country attain its food security, which is one of the Government’s Big Four agenda in the next five years.

Mr Ruto thanked Sudan for allowing Kenya’s tea to dominate 80 per cent of it’s market. Kenya, he said did not take this for granted.

President Bashir asked Kenya to consider importing materials for uniforms for security agencies from Sudan.

“I take this opportunity to ask Kenya to consider purchasing uniforms including those of military from our country as we commit ourselves to increasing purchase of tea from your country,” said Mr Bashir.

President Bashir congratulated President Kenyatta for his re-election.

Mr Ruto urged the business community to take advantage of the cordial relations between the two countries to exploit investments opportunities.

He said the measures taken by Kenya including issuing of visas to individuals wishing to visit the country on arrival were aimed promoting trading activities in the region.

The leaders said it was high time African countries focused their efforts on building up industries, skills and technologies so they can produce their own high quality products, creating much-needed jobs and income for their people.

President Bashir said Sudan through its Gezira cotton scheme has embarked on value addition that has led to manufacturing of uniforms in the country.

Mr Ruto who also toured Sudan Currency Printing Press in Khartoum praised the steps the country has taken in the development of its industrialization sector.

The Deputy President urged Sudanese companies to exploit the favorable investment climate to set base in Kenya.

He asked investors from the two countries to set up manufacturing plants in any of the nations and cash in on the expanded free trade area within the Sub-Saharan African market.

Mr Ruto said the balance of trade between the two nations is heavily in favour of Kenya and underscored the need to bridge the gap.

Present were Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri, his Industrialization counterpart Adan Mohammed; chairman of the Parliamentary Committee on Agriculture and Livestock Adan Haji Ali, MP Malulu Injendi (Malava), Kenya Bureau of Standards Managing Director Charles Ongwae, Kenya’s Ambassador to Sudan Arown Suge and Sudan Ambassador to Kenya Elsadig Abdalla.