The Ministry of Economy has announced that Kenya is the latest country to secure access to the UAE’s Trade for Development platform, which was launched by Dr. Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister of State for Foreign Trade, during the WTO’s 13th Ministerial Conference in Abu Dhabi in February.

Dr. Al Zeyoudi said, “The Trade for Development platform underlines the UAE’s commitment to enhancing inclusive, sustainable trade and leveraging its power to drive economic growth and prosperity throughout the world. As we have rapidly expanded our trade relations in recent years, we have developed extensive experience and expertise in the complex world of trade negotiations.

We welcome Kenya’s enrolment, which provides an opportunity for their policymakers and trade officials to benefit from best-in-class expertise, empowering them to better integrate with the global economy, accelerate their development and raise living standards for their citizens.”

The Trade for Development platform is a technical assistance programme developed by the UAE that offers a suite of online tools to assist trade officials, negotiators, and policymakers from developing and least developed nations build the technical capacity and expertise needed to negotiate complex and highly technical trade agreements.

Lack of resources and technical expertise is considered the main obstacle to many countries in effectively participating in the global economy and truly benefiting from the multilateral trading system.

The Trade for Development platform features a virtual library of content from global trade and policy experts, with curated online courses and self-learning resources covering all the key chapters that are traditionally found in a trade agreement including customs and trade facilitation, rules of origin, trade in services, IP rights, and dispute settlement.

The platform will serve as an always-available resource for developing country officials to draw on as they formulate trade policy and negotiate trade deals.

Kenya’s enrolment in the platform reflects the growing trade and investment ties between the two countries. In 2023, the nations shared US$3.1 billion in bilateral non-oil trade, an increase of 26.4% on the previous year. Kenya is one of the most promising economies in Africa, experiencing a real GDP growth of 5% in 2023 and a projected 4.5% to 5.2% increase in 2024.

Kenya is the ninth country to be given access to the platform, with eight other countries being invited to make use of its comprehensive resources when the platform was launched during the WTO’s biannual gathering of its members. Those eight countries were Ethiopia, Mozambique, Antigua and Barbuda, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, Comoros, Kyrgyzstan and Barbados.