Finland embassy signs Sh1.6bn funding deal with Trademark East Africa to promote trade

Trademark East AFrica Board Chairman Erastus Mwencha and Finaland Ambassador Erik Lundberg

Finland has signed a funding agreement of £10,5 million (Sh1.6 billion) with Trademark East Africa at the Port of Mombasa to develop free trade, safe trade and infrastructure in the region.

“We are happy to know that our support will go into developing inclusive trade opportunities, focusing on women, the youth and disabled people. We are pleased to support the important work that you do in developing these issues in East Africa,” the Embassy of Finland said on Tuesday.

They embassy, which got a tour of the Port of Mombasa, said it is an important gateway into East African trade.

On Monday, Finland Ambassador to Kenya Erik Lundberg met with the Kenya National Chamber of Commerce, the CEO of Gulf African Bank Suleman Shahbal and Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho.

“We had interesting discussions on trade, politics and the future of Mombasa as a key player when it comes to trade in Kenya and East Africa,” the embassy said in a statement.

TradeMark East Africa is funded by a range of development agencies to promote prosperity in East Africa through trade.

It works with East African Community institutions, national governments, the private sector and civil society organisations to increase trade by unlocking economic potential through reducing barriers to trade and increased business competitiveness.

Development policy is an important part of Finland’s foreign and security policy. Development cooperation is one means to implement the policy and through cooperation, provides millions of people with a chance for a better life, the embassy says on its website.

Finland’s development cooperation uses private sector financing instruments to support the development of Kenya’s commercial and economic operating environment.

“By supporting Kenya, Finland promotes regional stability and security in East Africa. In the coming years the focus of cooperation will shift more towards developing trade between Kenya and Finland,” the mission says.

It is  funding a number of regional and multilateral trade development projects in Kenya, including TradeMark East Africa and Finland’s support through the World Customs Organization, aimed to develop the business environment in East Africa.

The Energy and Environment Partnership Programme also funded by Finland has several ongoing projects in Kenya.

 

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