Fri, 26 Feb 2021

NAIROBI, Jan. 18 (Xinhua) -- Kenya's horticultural exporters and Kenya Airways on Monday signed an agreement to boost the country's exports by leveraging on its extensive international network.

The Fresh Produce Exporters Association of Kenya (FPEAK), Kenya Flower Council (KFC), the Fresh Produce Consortium said in Nairobi that the deal will ensure that the national flag carrier is part and parcel of the horticulture supply chain.

"Kenya Airways currently handles between 18 and 20 percent of the country's fresh produce exports. We hope that through this agreement the figure can expand to 30 percent in the next year," Clement Tulezi, CEO, KFC told journalists in Nairobi.

"In order to grow the horticulture industry every partner must play its role," Tulezi added.

He noted that under the agreement, Kenya Airways commits to ensuring that there is an international market for Kenyan fresh produce that is not service by cargo service.

The Kenyan carrier will also provide an aircraft to airlift the product even if it is not on its initial list of destinations.

"We have already seen that over the COVID-19 pandemic period, Kenya Airways has appreciated the place of fresh produce in the country, and they are making a commitment to give us the best service," Tulezi observed.

Allan Kilavuka, Kenya Airways CEO said cargo currently accounts for between seven and ten percent of its revenues.

"We want to gradually grow the cargo business to 20 percent in the next five years," he said.

Kilavuka said that it contributes about four percent of the gross domestic product of the Kenyan economy through logistics by supporting farmers export their produce, facilitating tourism activities, training in aviation skills as well as direct and indirect employment.

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