Kenya’s export promoting agency and the tea regulator on Tuesday signed an Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to boost tea exports by small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

Export Promotion Council (EPC) CEO Paul Biwott told a media briefing in Nairobi that his organization will help to build the capacity of the SMEs through Export Trade Training, Product Development, value addition and Export Market Linkage programmes.

“The overall goal of the agreement is to help SMEs transform and scale up their operations and ultimately see significant growth in the exports of value added teas,” Biwott said.

The initial lifespan for the partnership has been agreed in the first instance as three years, upon which a comprehensive programme review and evaluation will be conducted to determine the successes and areas that might require improvement.

Government data indicates that currently SMEs account for only ten percent of Kenya’s tea exports. He said that the deal will help to fully integrate the SMEs into the export markets.

“However, for the initiative to be successful, all players in the industry need to scale up their operations and shift their focus to value addition activities,” he added. Enditem

Source: Xinhua/