Kenya’s President, known for his friendly disposition towards the United States, is currently in Silicon Valley, San Francisco, engaging with American business leaders at an investment forum.
Notably absent from the presidential delegation, however, is the Kenyan Minister for Trade and Investments. Speculation has arisen that Washington is purposefully distancing itself from the minister due to his history of making contentious statements and employing inflammatory rhetoric.
This diplomatic sidelining follows a previous incident in July when the United States Trade Representative, Katherine Tai, visited Kenya. During her visit, two planned meetings with Moses Kuria, the Kenyan trade minister, were abruptly canceled.
The reason cited by the US official was Kuria’s reputation for using abrasive language against individuals and institutions.
The minister’s diplomatic isolation occurs at a time when the United States is actively courting African nations.
Kenya, viewed as a regional entry point, is seen by Washington as a strategic partner. This perspective was affirmed by US envoy Meg Whitman, who heralded Kenya as the future Silicon Valley.
The Biden administration is prioritizing the expansion of US markets in Africa and is working towards fostering continental economic growth through increased global, regional, and bilateral trade agreements.
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