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Small businesses in Kenya are set to benefit from KES110 billion trade facility – AfCTA

Through the African Continental Free Trade Area, small businesses in Kenya are set to benefit from a Sh110 billion trade facilities to support their market expansion.

AFCFTA Secretary-General Wamkele Mene said they were working across the continent with commercial banks to pool funds that would be provided by governments.
To ease currency convertibility across the world, this is ahead of the scheduled rollout of a payment facility.

“This trading facility will help small and medium-sized enterprises overcome the problems of access to new markets, not because of a lack of expertise, but because of funds,” he added.

He acknowledged that Africa’s 42 currencies were a disadvantage to small and medium-sized enterprises and that they would soon not have to turn into dollars, first to transact.

“The payment facility will ensure that the cost of transactions is reduced in relation to currency convertibility when you transact in support of AfCTA,” he explained.

He said that, following the implementation of the trade agreement, African SMEs will find new markets for their goods at a preferential rate.

On January 1, this year, AfCTA was operationalized, with 36 countries so far accepting to open up their markets.

He noticed that the only nation that had issued a certificate of origin for products exported from that country was Ghana.

“Trading under new rules is a process, and it takes time for governments to put the necessary customs procedures in place,” he added.

By the end of the year, Mr Mene said that most nations will have presented their ratification papers.