Kenya’s external trade hits Ksh.1.4 trillion in six months rebound

Kenya’s external trade hits Ksh.1.4 trillion in six months rebound

The value of Kenya’s external trade rose by 24.3 per cent across six months to June to stand at Ksh.1.36 trillion from a lower Ksh.1.094 trillion last year.

The growth in the country’s international trade from last year is largely attributable to rebounding global and macroeconomic economic conditions as the world re-emerges from COVID-19 related disruptions.

Imports into Kenya have grown by a greater 27.7 per cent margin at Ksh.991.5 billion with exports growing at a slower rate of 16.3 per cent at Ksh.368.7 billion.

During the six months window, Uganda was Kenya’s largest export destination having taken up goods worth Ksh.36.4 billion ahead of the Netherlands and the US at Ksh.31.1 billion and Ksh.26.6 billion respectively.

Other top export destination for Kenya in the half year period include the United Kingdom, Pakistan, Egypt, Germany, Rwanda, the UAE and France.

Food and beverages represent 42.3 per cent of Kenyan exports in the six months ahead of other consumer goods and non-food industrial supplies at 27.9 and 25.8 per cent respectively.

On the flip-side, China has maintained its stranglehold on Kenyan imports with the country ordering goods and services worth Ksh.208.9 billion in the six months window.

Other leading import sources for Kenya by order of value includes India, the UAE, Japan, Saudi Arabia, US, Netherlands, South Africa, Germany, the UK and France.

An estimate 39 per cent of the imports compose of industrial supplies, 16.1 per cent of the orders cover fuel and lubricants, machinery and capital equipment covers 14.3 per cent of the imports while 10.4 per cent of the orders are food and beverages.

The re-opening of major world economies in the opening half of the year has helped ease supply chain constrains allowing local goods to hit the international markets while opening the door for more imports into the country.

The blanket easing of COVID-19 restrictions in most countries has further allowed a return to international travel for both tourists and business travelers in the opening half.

Nevertheless, uncertainty persists on the pandemic’s path as COVID-19 variants threaten a return to tougher restrictions with some jurisdictions already having returned or stuck to the tough containment measures seen across 2020.

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Story By Kepha Muiruri
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