Kenya and the European Union (EU) have unveiled a strategic dialogue framework through which they seek to step up their bilateral relations.
The announcement was contained in a joint statement released on Monday evening in Brussels following a meeting between President Kenyatta and his European Council counterpart Charles Michel.
“The Strategic Dialogue between the Republic of Kenya and the European Union was launched on the occasion of the meeting between H.E. Uhuru Kenyatta, C.G.H., President of the Republic of Kenya, and H.E. Charles Michel, President of the European Council, held on 21 June 2021 in Brussels.
“This upgrade of the Kenya-European Union relations builds on the meeting between the two counterparts on 9 March 2021 at State House, Nairobi, and the renewed European Union Strategy for the Horn of Africa, adopted in May 2021, in which the European Union confirmed its readiness to step up its relationship with Kenya,” the statement reads in part.
The strategic dialogue framework recognizes Kenya as a strong democratic partner of the EU in East Africa and Horn of Africa region with potential for enhancing regional stability and performing a constructive role in peace and security.
Through the new bilateral framework, Kenya and the EU will cooperate more in domestic, regional and global interests, such as democracy, governance and human rights.
Other areas of elevated cooperation between Kenya and the EU include gender equality, peace and security, trade and investment, social development, climate change and digital technologies.
The framework to be implemented over time shall be guided by a roadmap to be developed by relevant entities of the Kenyan Government at the European Union.
“The thematic pillars of the Dialogue shall be developed and adapted over time, in accordance with Kenya’s and the European Union’s shared interests and agendas. The technical experts of the two sides are seized of the matter and a Roadmap for the implementation of this Strategic Dialogue is to be set out by the relevant services of the Government of Kenya and the European Union,” the statement reads.
President Kenyatta, who is in Belgium on a two-day Official Visit, was accompanied to the meeting with his European Council host by Cabinet Secretaries Raychelle Omamo (Foreign Affairs), Adan Mohamed (EAC) and Betty Maina (Trade).