KAM, Posta partner to tap intra-regional trade under AfCFTA

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By Sofia Ali

Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM) has forged a strategic partnership with Postal Corporation of Kenya (PCK) to tap into e-commerce business and intra-regional trade for its members.

Speaking during the signing of the agreement, Phyllis Wakiaga, the CEO of KAM said, “Posta’s network of more 600 branches countrywide, and linkages with other postal organisations in the African region would come in handy for exports and imports, at a time when Africa is implementing the Africa free Continental Trade Area (AfCFTA).”

The partnership will see PCK offer same day and overnight courier services, rider dedicated services, clearing and forwarding services to the association and its members. Under the agreement, the two parties also plan to implement programmes such as international courier services, direct mail marketing and training of KAM members on how to capitalise on the collaboration.

Dan Kagwe, the CEO and Postmaster General of the PCK said the corporation would offer discounted rates and dedicated courier services, as it pursues its quest to be an aggregator of courier and delivery services countrywide.

Mr Kagwe said Africa can only realise rapid economic growth by “harnessing its production capacities and tapping intra-Africa trade opportunities available through connecting more than 1.2 billion people across 54 African countries.”

In the new partnership, the two organisations will work together to mobilise resources through training programmes, with a view to fund the operations and delivery of the objectives of the memorandum of understanding (MoU).

The MoU will be implemented by a joint management committee that will be charged with coordination of collaborative activities, monitoring implementation of joint activities, and exploring emerging opportunities to deepen the partnership.

The partnership with KAM follows a recent partnership with the Trademark East Africa (TMEA) where PCK secured US$650,000 KSh72 million from TMEA to improve Posta’sdigital services, to enable it to effectively support ecommerce in the East African region.

The corporation, which is a primary handler and gatekeeper of parcels and small to medium- sized cargo for consignments crossing borders for both air and land freight, will now benefit through enhanced internal digital capacities and improved collaboration with external, both regional and global actors, in the e-commerce space.

“It is a great beginning that will open doors for Posta to work with diverse stakeholders and access the potential that exists in the East African region,” said Mr. Kagwe. Notably, the country and region at large have over time experienced a rapid shift from traditional mail, money order and stamp sales to the growth of e-commerce and packages below 10kgs that are relatable to SMEs.  

Against the backdrop of Covid-19 pandemic, PCK is keen to tap into the growth of small parcels and e-commerce items within the postal systems of Kenya from an average 1800 items every four days in 2018 to 2300 per day in 2021.

As part of the partnership, the corporation intends to increase its capacity to process 10,000 packages daily to provide an efficient logistics and distribution platform for Ecommerce entrepreneurs and customers.

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