Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta, has personally taken up the negotiations for direct flights to United states of America, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Trade has said.
This arrangement will see Kenya Airways and Amercia’s Delta fly directly between the two countries, the ministry said in a press statement from New York.
Kenyatta was speaking to members of the Business council for international understanding during a luncheon hosted in his honour.
Kenyatta attended the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York.
Kenyatta revealed that he had raised the matter with US Secretary of State, John Kerry, and is optimistic this latest effort will yield results faster than what has been achieved until now.
“We are keen to see the two countries exchange direct flights and I have personally taken it up and raised the issue with top US officials latest being in a meeting with John Kerry yesterday,” he said.
He was responding to a question on what the government was doing to facilitate direct air link that will help increase connectivity for people and business between the two countries.
In addition, the President revealed that Boeing Company were also seriously lobbying the US government on the same issue of direct flights.
President Kenyatta said his government is working hard to create a conducive business environment and urged American investors to take advantage of this.
He said opportunities in telecommunications were enormous and cited the mobile payments model – M-Pesa – that had become hugely successful in Kenya.
He said: “The area of telecommunication provides enormous opportunities that some of you can consider investing in.
“we are on the tail end of preparing to launch one seamless network in East Africa where calling from one end to the other will not attract roaming charges.”
He reminded investors that East Africa was one huge market of 150 million people.
East Africa at the same time, he said, remains a tourist destination of choice and that is why a single tourist visa has been introduced.
Already, Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda have entered into agreement on this and the rest are expected to join soon.