Chinese promise to partner with Nakuru County in trade

A delegation from China has expressed its interest in importing more avocados, pyrethrum, tea and vegetable products from Kenya.

The 90 member delegations that include investors and government officials from Shandong province identified Nakuru as one county that they were keen to partner with.

Shandong is one of the largest agricultural provinces in China with a population of 105m people, 137 counties and 16 Cities.

This emerged during the Shandong-Nakuru economy and trade negotiations conference held in Enashipai Spa in Naivasha and attended by over 300 investors.

Addressing the press, the deputy director of commerce in Shandong province Lyu Wei said that they were keen to increase their imports from Kenya.

“Last year the 57.8 percent of aquatic and marine products were from Kenya while in return we exported some agricultural products mainly garlic,” she said.

She said that they were keen to address the issue of quality and safety on imported agricultural products adding that this could be addressed through trainings and exchange programmes.

“In future we will promote Shandong peanuts, vegetables and fruits to Kenya and in return import more Kenyan tea, coffee, avocados and nuts,” she said.

On his part, Nakuru Deputy Governor Dr Eric Korir said that they were keen to partner with investors in the agricultural sector where they was very high potential.

He called on the delegation to use the availability of various industrial parks and ample and available geothermal power to invest in the county.

“Nakuru has been identified as one of the counties with the highest GDP and ease of doing business and we are ready to work with any investor,” he said.

Korir said that the county was fully behind the agriculture sector and pointed to pyrethrum, avocado and dairy as sectors that were keen to fully revive.

“We have already identified five industrial parks in Nakuru and are calling on the visiting delegation to offer our youths scholarships so that they can learn more,” he said.

The CEC for Agriculture Immaculate Maina said that they were keen on avocado growing after the first batch of the frozen produce was imported to China last week.

On pyrethrum, she said that the plant had the capability of producing ten different products and challenged the delegation to take advantage of the ample crop from Nakuru.

“There are many opportunities in the livestock sector and we are in the process of uniting the top ten dairy co-operatives in Nakuru as we address the issue of value addition,” she said.