President Uhuru Kenyatta urges Arab nations to invest in Africa

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KUWAIT: President Uhuru Kenyatta Tuesday attended the third Africa-Arab summit, where he encouraged Arab nations to invest heavily in the continent to strengthen a friendship that goes back centuries.

President Kenyatta is among 65 African, Arab and Asian leaders attending the Kuwait Summit held at the picturesque seaside Bayan Palace.

“Without a doubt, Arab-African relations are founded on unbreakable bonds and the most immutable circumstances. We share a common geography and history over two continents and have pursued similar aspirations and goals collectively and individually over many years,” the President told the summit.

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“The founders of the Arab -African partnership resolved to work together towards those shared goals, and committed themselves to a vision of brotherhood and solidarity. The realization that our respective journeys towards prosperity share the same roads is the foundation of our partnership,” he added.

The two-day summit –which opened on Tuesday –will discuss a joint financing mechanism for development projects to promote trade and investment; global fight against terrorism and transnational crimes like drug and human trafficking, and piracy; Africa-Arab cooperation in security, and coordination of positions on the reform of the United Nations.

President Kenyatta is expected to speak strongly about the damage brought by terror on African economies.

Kenya will also explore how African and Arab countries can pool Sovereign Wealth Funds to fast-track investment. A Sovereign Wealth Fund is part of the recommendations of the Presidential Taskforce on the reform of parastatals, whose recommendations the President has directed to be implemented in three months.

President Kenyatta, in Kuwait mainly to push Kenya’s economic growth agenda, will also separately hold talks with the leaders of Kuwait, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Palestine. The President will also meet a host of his African compatriots, including Presidents Paul Kagame of Rwanda, Alassane Ouattara of Cote D’Ivoire, Macky Sall of Senegal and Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn. The leaders are known friends of Kenya.-standardmedia.

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