Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua on Monday evening hosted Colombia’s Vice President Ms Francia Elena Marques Mina in his Harambee House Annex office ahead of his visit to the Latin America nation next week.
Mr Gachagua told his host that Kenya is keen on expanding the bilateral ties between Kenya and Colombia as it looks to revive the coffee sector.
The Deputy President added that the two countries were nurturing ties that will be of great benefit to them.
Vice President Mina who is visiting Kenya for the second time in three months, is in the country for the Africa Climate Summit and paid a courtesy call on the DP who hosted her in her maiden visit to Kenya in May.
“Your second visit to Kenya this year only serves to strengthen the relations between our countries. We have taken note of the visa and aviation challenges that have frustrated travelling here. We will work on these in order to ease the travelling between our country and Colombia,” the DP said.
The DP said his planned visit to the South-American country next week will further boost the blossoming relations between the nations.
“We are interested in learning the best practices especially in coffee farming because like Kenya, Colombia is among the best producers of Coffee,” the DP said.
Ms Mina said they had already identified the challenges hampering better relations and are working on them to ensure they improve the ties.
“We are keen on strengthening the relations between the two countries. We know the challenges that we are facing but we will seek to solve them to boost the ties,” she said.
The Vice President said her country was interested in finding a connection with Africa because many African-Colombians traced their roots to the continent.
“We know Colombia cannot progress without respecting the African descent of over 30 percent of Afro-Colombians,” added Ms Mina.
The DP praised the Colombia Vice President for attending the Summit, the first to be held in Africa, saying it showed Colombia was interested in working with African countries to find solutions to the challenges brought by climate change.
“The Summit is very important for us. This Summit will give Africa an opportunity to take a common position on Climate Change and Carbon Credit because for a long time we have been given a raw deal from the rest of the world despite being the least emitters of carbon,” said Mr Gachagua.
He said the outcomes of the summit will be taken to the United Nations General Assembly and the COP-28.
“We will also take a common position on climate financing that will be articulated during the United Nations General Assembly and during the COP-28. This Summit has been informed by the knowledge that there is strength in having a united position,” added the DP.