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President Uhuru Kenyatta and his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron, at the BPI France Inno Generation 2020 business forum, the country's largest international innovation and entrepreneurship extravaganza which brings together hundreds of French companies to explore investment opportunities abroad. The Kenyan leader delivered a keynote address at the event/Photo: State House Kenya

Kenya’s president woos French investors in Paris, signs major contracts

Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta is currently on a visit to Paris to sign major agreements with French companies on water, infrastructure and energy and attend events to further Franco-Kenyan economic and political ties..

President Uhuru Kenyatta kicked off his 5-day official visit to France on Wednesday evening at Elysee Palace where he was received by his host, French President Emmanuel Macron. Elysee Palace is the French President’s official residence.

The two leaders then witnessed the signing of three bilateral agreements before leading their delegations to a State Banquet hosted in honour of the visiting Kenyan leader.

Among the agreements signed is a public private partnership (PPP) for the construction of the Nairobi-Nakuru-Mau Summit highway between KeNHA and Vinci Concessions. The highway is one of the largest PPP projects in Eastern Africa.

Others were agreements for the development of the Nairobi Central Business District (CBD), the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) commuter railway line and the 400KV Menengai-Rongai electricity transmission line.

President Uhuru Kenyatta kicked off his official visit to France on Wednesday evening at Elysee Palace where he was received by his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron/Photo: State House Kenya

 

On Thursday, President Kenyatta delivered the key-note address at the BPI France Inno Generation 2020 business forum, the country’s largest international innovation and entrepreneurship extravaganza which brings together hundreds of French companies to explore investment opportunities abroad.

The Kenyan leader spoke about investment opportunities in Africa at the forum during which he wooed French companies to invest in Kenya.

President Uhuru Kenyatta and his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron, at the BPI France Inno Generation 2020 business forum, the country’s largest international innovation and entrepreneurship extravaganza which brings together hundreds of French companies to explore investment opportunities abroad. The Kenyan leader delivered a keynote address at the event/Photo: State House Kenya

 

Kenyatta, who is on his first post Covid-19 foreign trip, will preside over the Kenya-France business forum organized by the French Business Confederation (Movement Des Entreprises De France (MEDEF) on Friday.

The meeting brings together investors from Kenya and France to discuss investment opportunities in Kenya as well as explore avenues for increasing Kenyan exports into the French market.

In March 2019, Macron visited Kenya, the first official trip by a French head of state to Kenya since independence. The two presidents committed to several infrastructure projects. And Kenyatta’s current visit is a follow-up to his French counterpart’s. 

A cross-section of participants at the BPI France Inno Generation 2020 business forum/Photo: State House Kenya

 

President Kenyatta is accompanied on his France visit by Cabinet Secretaries Raychelle Omamo (Foreign Affairs), Ukur Yatani (Treasury), James Macharia (Infrastructure) and Betty Maina (Trade).

Despite the very strong Chinese presence in the Kenyan economy, France has said it was attracted to Kenya whose growth has propelled it in a decade into the club of middle-income countries.

Adira Kallo

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