ACP Nations Will Defend Multilateral Trading Systems, President Kenyatta Says
President Uhuru Kenyatta today said the African, Caribbean and
Pacific group of nations will strongly defend multilateral trading
systems in order to protect themselves from unfair trade practices.
President Kenyatta said Kenya, which has taken over the chairmanship
of the group of 79 countries, will spearhead reforms and reinvigoration
of the ACP for the next three years.
He said that under his stewardship, Kenya will seek to promote and
protect the interests of the group at the regional, continental and
“I will also champion the group’s solidarity and unity; advocate for
an enhanced intra-ACP and South-South and Triangular Cooperation;
Champion a Reform Agenda for the ACP Group; push for the integration of
our States into the global economy, as well as the conclusion and
implementation of the New Partnership Agreement,” said the President.
He said he will share his vision with the leadership of the rest of
the ACP countries on how they can collectively pursue a common roadmap
for the actualisation of the transformed ACP Group.
President Kenyatta urged ACP countries to embrace innovation and technology in order to boost their economies.
He spoke during the 9th African Caribbean and Pacific Summit of
Heads of State and Government at the Kenyatta international Convention
Centre also attended by Deputy President William Ruto.
“We need to accelerate the implementation of structural reforms and
policies and infrastructural development, targeted at fostering
industrial development and diversification of our economies,” the
He cited the example of Kenya which has undertaken a deliberate path
of structural transformation, and identified four priority sectors,
namely: manufacturing, affordable housing, universal health coverage and
food and nutrition security.
“These four areas were prioritized to drive equitable and inclusive
economic development and improved quality of life, create jobs
particularly for the youth, and improve our economy’s resilience against
the anticipated challenges posed by climate change,” said the
He acknowledged that climate change presents an existential threat
to the world especially island nations that form a majority of the ACP
President Kenyatta called for the ACP to become a vehicle for deeper
south-south partnership given that it represents the nations in the
southern hemisphere. He said the ACP stands out as the largest
transnational organisation in the world and it should therefore play a
stronger role in global affairs.
Speaking on the Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) between ACP
and the Europeam Union, the President noted that Kenya’s wish is for
further agreements with the EU that will enhance integration of ACP
countries into the global economy.
“We look forward to a more balanced trading arrangement with the
European Union in the New Partnership Agreement, which gives priority to
emerging opportunities especially in e-commerce and trade in services,”
said the President.
Other leaders who spoke at the summit included the Prime Minister of
Barbados Ms Mia Mottley and the President of Ghana Nana Akufo-Addo
Presidents Yoweri Museveni (Uganda), Paul Kagame (Rwanda), Hage
Geingob (Namibia) and Prime Minister Andrew Holness (Jamaica) also
attended the Heads of State summit.