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Kenya, Finland to enhance commercial, environmental ties

Foreign Affairs CS Alfred Mutua says Kenya is open for more Investments from Finland

by Eliud Kibii
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Finland Ambassador Pirka Tapiola, Economic Affairs Minister Mika Lintila and Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Dr Alfred Mutua in Nairobi on February 2, 2023/ MFA

NAIROBI – Kenya and Finland have committed to enhance commercial relations and environmental ties following high-level meetings between Kenyan government official and visiting Finn Minister of Economic Affairs.

Minister Mika Lintila started his visit on February 2 accompanied by an official and business delegation from the fields of education, digitalisation and environmental technology.

On Thursday, Minister Lintila met Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Dr Alfred Mutua, who said Kenya is open for more Investments from Finland.

“I appealed for more commercial engagements in the areas of ICT, technology cooperation, environmental and circular economy investments and  renewable energy,” CS Mutua said.

Lintila, who was accompanied by Ambassador Pirka Tapiola, welcomed Mutua’s invitations to increased trade between the two countries, noting that this would enhance and contribute to the deep relations between Kenya and Finland.

“We look forward to deepening our bilateral relations and boosting our mutually beneficial trade in the green and digital transformation as well as education sector,” Finland Embassy said in a dispatch after the meeting.

The Minister also met with Treasury Cabinet Secretary Prof Njuguna Ndung’u and discussed the state of Kenya’s economy and cooperation opportunities for Finnish companies.

He also met Environment and Forestry Cabinet Secretary Soipan Tuya and discussed collaboration in environmental technologies and in the green and digital transformation.

On Thursday as well, the minister and his delegation met Kenya Private Sector Alliance CEO Carole Kariuki.

The discussed various ways in which KEPSA can partner with the Finnish government to create more opportunities for Kenyan start-ups, with a key focus on technology, education, and the scale-up of small businesses.

ICT and Digital Economy CS Eliud Owalo also hosted the delegation, saying Kenya is exploring various avenues of cooperation in advancing it digital economy.

In the meeting with Education Principal Secretary Belio Kipsang, the two sides discussed collaboration possibilities between the countries in the education sector, particularly the Technical and Vocational Education Training.

In an earlier meeting with Central Bank Governor Dr Patrick Njoroge,  the two sides discussed financial digitalisation and green economy, trade and investment opportunities and the effects of Russia’s aggression against Ukraine in Kenyan economy/

Kenya and Finland relations date back to the 1960s and areas of engagement have largely been around the water sector, forest management, good governance and equality.

According to Finland’s country strategy for Kenya 2021-2024, it has four interlinked goals: Supporting Kenya’s stability and seeking partnerships in peace and security through good governance and equality;  empowerment of women and youth for a more stable, prosperous and equal society; help unlock the potential for sustainable and inclusive economic growth and tackle climate change.

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