March 19, 2020


Washington, D.C.— Myron Brilliant, Executive Vice President and Head of International Affairs, U.S. Chamber of Commerce issued the following statement in response to news that the administration has notified Congress of its Intent to Negotiate a Model Trade Agreement with Kenya:

“The U.S. Chamber welcomes news that the administration is working with Congress to reach a high-standard, comprehensive free trade agreement with Kenya. When complete, the agreement would be the first of its kind between the U.S. and a sub-Saharan African country. Kenya is a natural place to start due to its diversified economy, annual GDP growth of almost 6 percent over the last decade, and an increasing number of American companies establishing their regional or African-wide headquarters in its capital city Nairobi.

“As a model for agreements with other African countries, this initial free trade agreement will strengthen and deepen our relationships with economies across the continent by providing the necessary legal protections, and enduring, reciprocal trade. With the African Growth and Opportunity Act set to expire in 2025, the Kenya free trade agreement will provide businesses the certainty they need to invest. The Chamber supports the administration’s efforts to expand opportunities for American companies to gain better access to key markets across the continent.

“We look forward to providing input into the negotiating objectives with our members and working with members of Congress on both sides of the aisle to bring this deal to fruition.”

In February, the U.S. Chamber launched its U.S.-Kenya Trade Task Force, which brings together business executives to exchange ideas, build mutual trust, and seek common ground on key trade priorities with U.S. and Kenyan trade officials. The task force will provide recommendations on enhancing cross-border trade flows and on improving efficient trade practices