NAIROBI, Kenya Aug 29 – Speaker of the National Assembly Justin Muturi has acceded to calls for the establishment of relations between Jordan Parliament and the National Assembly of Kenya, and for closer cooperation both at the bilateral level and during their engagements at international fora.
While acknowledging that the two countries have taken similar political stands on international matters, Speaker Muturi further undertook to take effective steps towards the development of a framework for the exchange of expertise through Parliamentary engagements between the two legislatures.
He was speaking when he held bilateral talks with the Speaker of Jordan’s House of Representatives, Atef Al Tarawneh, and the President of the Senate, Faisal Alfayez, Thursday morning.
“We welcome this aspect of Parliamentary cooperation. Indeed, the understanding between Parliaments promotes the collaboration between the two countries that are collaborating,” Muturi noted.
Speaker Muturi further extended an invitation to Jordanian investors to invest in Kenya noting that Kenya’s Parliament had already made the necessary legislative interventions for a favorable regulatory framework towards the development of Special Economic Zones as well as Export Processing Zones.
Already, the two respective chambers of Commerce have established links and expressed interest on future engagements.
During his engagements with the two Speakers accompanied by members of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the House of Representatives, Speaker Muturi and his delegation also deliberated on the enhancement of the already developed cooperation in trade, tourism and security.
On the efforts to combat terrorism which also formed part of their discussions, the leaders noted that their two countries had been victims of extremism and terrorism during several attacks that have taken place in the last few years, with the attack on dusitD2 on 14 Riverside in January being the most recent one in Kenya.
Speaker Tarawneh expressed his sympathies with the victims of the attack and reiterated his county’s commitment to continued support for the war against extremism and the annihilation of terrorism in both countries.
Kenya and Jordan have an existing agreement on military cooperation and intelligence sharing.
Speaker Tarawneh observed that Kenya is a genuine partner in the fight against terrorism, adding that a strong stand needs to be taken by the international community to address the menace.
Cognizant that Kenya and Jordan have largely been Islands of peace, he further called on Kenya’s political support towards the Two-Party State UN resolution which calls for the establishment of the Palestine State.
Jordan currently hosts over 4.5 million refugees from Palestine and Syria.
Speaker Muturi was emphatic that Kenya’s philosophy since independence has been pro peaceful co-existence between countries adding that States should uphold the territorial integrity of others to enhance global peace and security.
He further also informed him that Kenya advocates for tolerance, herself being a multi-cultural and multi-religious state where every citizen is at liberty to practice whatever faith they may wish.
At the Senate, the House President, Faisal Alfayez congratulated Kenya on her first shipment of crude oil on Monday and hoped that further cooperation could be cultivated in this sector given that Jordan is a net importer of oil.
He however called on Kenya to explore the consideration for a Bilateral Air Service Agreement, to not only enhance their respective people’s interactions (and hence contribute to the growth of tourism between Kenya and Jordan) but to also enhance trade.
Kenya’s top imports to Amman, the capital of Jordan, include coffee and tea.
The two countries already have agreements and Memorandum of Understanding on importation of coffee, Chambers of Commerce, cooperation on Defense, and an economic and trade agreement.
Further, Kenyans visiting Jordan can get visas on arrival.