Non-tariff barriers ruin trade – Uhuru
President Uhuru Kenyatta and visiting Ethiopia Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed yesterday inaugurated the Moyale One-Stop Border Post (OSBP).
Also inaugurated is the 500-kilometre Hawassa-Hagere Mariam-Moyale Road, which is part of the Trans African Highway, and a key segment of Mombasa-Nairobi-Addis Ababa transport corridor.
Uhuru encouraged traders to utilise the new infrastructure especially the OSBP to boost cross-border trade, and partnership with the Ethiopian Government, in the roll out of joint infrastructure projects, saying such initiatives deepen bilateral ties.
“With the completion of this border post, the two countries have demonstrated the political goodwill to address the challenges and impediments facing businesses from both sides,” the President said.
Due to the region’s huge untapped potential for trade and investment, Uhuru encouraged the local business communities to capitalise on the OSBP to boost trade and investments across the border.
“We want to see Moyale becoming the Dubai of this whole region, people coming here to buy goods and taking them to other countries. That is the beginning of true partnership, true cooperation,” the President said.
Speaking of-the-cuff, at a separate meeting on the Kenyan side of the border, President Kenyatta said non-tariff barriers are the greatest impediment to regional trade.
He said Kenya will continue working closely with her neighbours to eliminate the identified trade barriers so as to increase the flow of business across regional borders.
Prime Minister Dr Abiy Ahmed said the new Moyale OSBP will help expedite movement of goods and persons across the border.
“This artificial border, in my opinion, will be dismantled with the new infrastructure.
The new infrastructure will bring the two families together and tap the potential and opportunities of business and economy,” Dr Abiy said.
The Prime Minister said Kenya and Ethiopia will continue working together on infrastructure and security along the border region.