KHARTOUM, Sudan, Oct 31 – Kenya and Sudan today signed agreements to deepen the two country’s collaboration in oil and mining sector.
Kenya is poised to gain from the agreements as the Sudan has made strides in petroleum and gas and mining sectors.
The Sudan is an established oil exporting country and has made progress in mineral business with the government owned Sudan Gold Refinery in Khartoum producing 80 tonnes of pure gold in the last one year.
President Uhuru Kenyatta and President Omar Hassan al-Bashir witnessed the signing of the two MoUs at the Presidential Palace in Khartoum.
The agreement on mining will enhance cooperation in the sector for mutual benefit.
It also aims to strengthen cooperation in mineral research and exploration institutions. It will also boost Kenya’s mineral sector through the exchange of expertise and training.
Before witnessing the signing of the agreements, President Kenyatta was taken on a tour of the Khartoum Refinery Company which refines petroleum.
The President also toured the Sudan Gold Refinery which processed 80 tonnes of gold mined by small scale miners in the last one year alone.
President Kenyatta also toured Cofftea tea factory which import and does value addition to tea from Kenya.
More than 70 percent of the tea consumed in Sudan is produced in Kenya.
Addressing the press after witnessing the signing of the agreements, the two Presidents said Kenya and Sudan continue engaging with each other as neighbours.
The two countries shared a common border before the creation of South Sudan.
“Kenya and Sudan are still neighbours despite the fact that there is a new country in between us,” said President Kenyatta.
He said his visit was fruitful and expects mutual gain for both countries.
“We also engaged in discussions on regional matters and how our two countries which are stable nations can contribute to more stability in the region,” said President Kenyatta.
The two leaders discussed how to continue creating stability in South Sudan, Somalia, Burundi, Central Africa Republic and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
On his part, President Bashir thanked Kenya for the role it played in hosting the Naivasha talks that led to a peaceful resolution of the war that raged in sudan for more than two decades. The peaceful resolution led to the birth of South Sudan.
President Kenyatta also commended President Bashir and the people of Sudan for the positive development on the country’s political landscape.
He said the successful conclusion of the National Dialogue process deserves commendation as it unites the country.
President Kenyatta was earlier in the day briefed on the gains made by the National Dialogue process whose recommendations now await implementation.
The Sudanese officials who briefed President Kenyatta included among others the Secretary General of the National Dialogue process, Prof Hashim Salim.
He was also briefed on the resolution of the conflict in the Darfur region of the Sudan.
President Kenyatta later departed from Khartoum International Airport for Nairobi, Kenya.
He was seen off by President Bashir and senior Sudanese dignitaries.