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Why Kenya sees DRC’s entry as a game-changer to intra-regional trade in East Africa

By Mwangi Maina
Posted on Thursday, 30 December 2021 11:06, updated on Monday, 3 January 2022 16:13

Men hold flags during the launch of a new flight to the Eastern DRC city of Goma, at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA), in Nairobi
Men hold flags of the Democratic Republic of Congo and Kenya, near an airplane belonging to the Kenyan budget airline Jambojet, during the launch of a new flight to the Eastern DRC city of Goma, at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) in Nairobi, Kenya, September 10, 2021. REUTERS/Edwin Waita

Kenya is intensifying its investment interests in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The country’s private sector recently sent a trade mission to the DRC.

As the DRC nears its official admission into the East African Community (EAC), Kenya organised a 200-member trade delegation to the central Africa country in November.

Kenyan firms that have expressed interest in the DRC include Jubilee Insurance, Equity Bank and Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB), which have started a plan to enter the country through acquisition of an existing lender.

Deepening relations between Kenya and the DRC

According to Equity Group — a key player in the strategy — the 15-day trade mission to the DRC, between 29 November and December 2021, was to deepen trade relations between Nairobi and Kinshasa.