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Spokesperson’s weekly briefing State Lodge, Kisumu 16 October 2016
Good morning Ladies and Gentlemen
And Especially Good morning to you ladies and gentlemen in Kisumu, from where I am holding my weekly briefing
We have a number of issues to cover today.
First. Let me talk to two events of an international nature with intense domestic impact.
VISIT BY PRESIDENT JACOB ZUMA:
First was the very successful State Visit to Kenya by President Jacob Zuma. The visit was important in helping Kenya and South Africa build confidence and trust, which is an imperative in significantly improving our bilateral relations and fostering growth.
Agreements covering the environment, trade, Investment, security and defense were signed, and will propel our relations to new heights, as both President Kenyatta and President Zuma acknowledged.
To many Kenyans though, the question to be answered remained on the issuance of visas to Kenyans. Now of course, as noted, we issue South Africans with visas on arrival and that’s what we would like to see reciprocated.
However, we have an MOU agreed six months ago, and which both leaders agreed must be implemented in full. That itself was a major step forward. That MOU says the following:
Visa exemption for holders of diplomatic and official passports (and an additional agreement on this was formalized last week)
Decrease of service fee from $71 to $49
Issuing of three-year multiple entry visa for frequent travellers
Ten-year multiple entry visa for frequent business travelers and academics
Issuing of study visas for the duration of study (including extending permanent residence to those studying within the critical skills category).
Removal of transit visas for travelers transiting through South African airports.
We expect to see our partners implementing the new regime as agreed, which will take some of the pressure off our citizens wishing to travel as tourists, to do business, or to study in South Africa.
It is noteworthy that this visit also raised the ante in our business relations. Let me speak to LAPPSET, one of the areas where we signed an MOU. The Development Bank of South Africa is the main arranger for a consortium that wants to invest $1.2 billion in 3 additional berths at Lamu Port.
Second, the same consortium would look to fund construction of the Lamu-Garissa-Isiolo road under the annuity programme at a cost of $700 million.
PRESIDENT KENYATTA IN TOGO:
Second. President Uhuru Kenyatta is currently in Lome, Togo, where he attended an African Union summit on maritime security, safety and development.
As the President has often stated, the Blue Economy is a new frontier for our economic development, as well as that of our entire continent.
With a combined Economic Zone of 13 million square kilometers and seventeen percent of the world’s freshwater resources, Africa has a significant maritime strategic and geopolitical importance in the world. More so, if sustainably exploited, these resources will propel Kenya and Africa on a path of inclusive, sustainable and “green” industrialization.
The President was delighted to see Africa finally agreeing to take the lead in maritime security, safety and development, which he saw as heralding a new beginning towards conservation and sustainable exploitation of marine resources.
The President welcomed a draft Charter on Maritime Security, Safety and Development, which the summit adopted.
AMB. AMINA MOHAMMED:
The AU Summit in Togo also offered an early opportunity for...
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