NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 10 – More than 24 companies are participating in the inaugural Kenya Exporter of the Year Awards (KEYA) aimed at encouraging local firms to export their goods and services.
Kenya Exports Performance 2018 Report by the Export Promotion Council (EPC) indicates that exports grew in value from Sh594 billion in 2017 to Sh613 billion in 2018; an increase of 3.2% while imports grew from Sh1.73 trillion in 2017 to Sh1.76 trillion in 2018; an increase of 2%.
The balance of trade deficit went up by 1.42% from Sh1.13 trillion in 2017 to Sh1.15 trillion in 2018.
KEYA 2019 has been organised by the Export Promotion Council (EPC) to recognise firms that have made significant contribution to the development of the economy through exemplary business performance.
EPC Chief Executive Officer, Peter Biwott said: “We want to help power the Government’s Big4 Agenda by recognising excellence while at the same time inspiring ambitious companies to export more to boost the economy.”
According to the Exports Performance 2018 report, the major exports included tea, horticulture, articles of apparel and clothing accessories, coffee and titanium ores and concentrates, all contributing to 62.% of the merchandise exports, while the major imports were petroleum oil products, crude palm oil, industrial machinery, motor vehicles, drugs and medical equipment.
In 2018, Uganda regained top position as Kenya’s lead market for exports with her exports slightly increasing from Sh61.8 billion in 2017 to Sh61.9 billion in 2018 (an increase by 0.1%); followed by Pakistan who imported products worth Sh59.4 billion in 2018 down from Sh 64.1 billion in 2017 (a decrease of 7.9%); and USA who imported goods worth Sh47.34 billion in 2018 up from Sh47.27 billion in 2017 (a slight increase of 0.15%).
The KEYA Awards focuses on excellence based and recognition honours, which are determined by leadership and corporate governance, marketing and customer focus, financial and revenue generation practices and ICT adoption in the firms. Product quality, processes and certification, human resource management and sustainability of the firms are also evaluated.
The Awards ceremony will be held at the Kenyatta International Conference Centre (KICC) in Nairobi on July 15, 2019.