The EPA story and Implications of Brexit
The objective of this paper is to set the background for a discussion and analysis of the EAC-EU Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) and the implication of Brexit on the overall trade relations between Kenya and the UK. The first and most obvious point it that there is currently great uncertainty on many issues, and that virtually all of trading partners with the UK are in the same position. There will therefore be an involved and time-consuming process as everyone tries to get their place in the queue to discuss several different issues with the UK.
The irony for Kenya and indeed Africa is that the ink is not yet dry on Kenya’s signing of the EPA after a long and almost tortuous process when the Brexit outcome dramatically altered the policy landscape with Kenya’s main trading partner in the EU. We start this paper by describing in detail the evolution of the trade agreements through to the ink-is-still-wet signing of the EPA, and then outline Kenya’s trading profile with the EU and the UK. This profile is set against the role of the East African trading partners in both Kenyan trade overall and the EAC-Kenyan profile with the EU. We introduce some of the many other factors such as the possible impacts of Brexit on the UK Pound and these implications for Kenya and other trading partners.
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