Kakuzi gets Kephis’ clearance to export fresh avocados to China

Kakuzi gets Kephis’ clearance to export fresh avocados to China

Kenya’s Kakuzi has become one of the first companies in the country to receive the green light from the Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service (Kephis) to process, prepare and export fresh avocados to China. The agri-business firm made this announcement on Thursday after successfully passing a series of inspections by Kephis that landed them the approval. “At the Makuyu facility and Orchards, we maintain world-class phytosanitary standards for our exports to Europe, and the KEPHIS approval further serves to underscore our quality commitments.” Kakuzi Managing Director Chris Flowers said.

This news comes just weeks after China allowed fresh avocados from Kenya to enter its large market; a decision that has led several Kenyan firms, including Kakuzi, to seek to win a share in that lucrative market. According to a Business Daily article (https://www.businessdailyafrica.com/bd/corporate/companies/kakuzi-seeks-nod-for-china-avocado-exports-3751784), apart from Kakuzi, Kephis has audited nine other firms to assess the extent to which they meet the quality and safety standards to export fresh avocados to the Asian country. Approval from Kephis grants Kenyan companies the status of certified exporters of fresh avocados to China.

Paving the way for the export of fresh avocados to China

In April 2019, Chinese President Xi Jinping and his Kenyan counterpart Uhuru Kenyatta signed a deal to allow the export of Kenyan avocados and other horticultural products to China, making Kenya the first African country to export avocados to the Asian country. However, until early this year, Kenyan farmers and traders were required to freeze their crops before sending them to China. This requirement sought to prevent plant pathogens and pests commonly found in fresh avocados in Kenya from entering China. Because of the lack of appropriate facilities and limited resources, only one Kenyan firm out of 100 had the capacity to meet China’s export requirements resulting in an insignificant volume of frozen avocados exports to China since 2019.

China’s approval of the export of Kenya’s fresh avocados to its market is expected to boost the volume of avocados shipped to China, provided that avocado farmers and traders comply with strict phytosanitary regulations and meet the veterinary sanitary requirements.

Hopes for a reduced trade deficit

The decision to allow Kenyan fresh avocados into the Chinese market has been welcomed in Kenya as a means to increase Kenya’s export volume and therefore contribute to reducing the trade deficit Kenya has with China. According to Kenya’s National Bureau of Statistics, in 2021, Kenya imported about $3.9 billion worth of products from China while it exported a mere $131 million worth of products to the Asian country.

In 2021, Kenya was the top exporter of avocado among African countries and was featured in the top 10 producers in the world. When signing the deal with China in 2019, Kenyan officials were hoping to see the Chinese market absorb 40 percent of Kenya’s avocado produce. Such expectations, however, are far from being met due to China’s requirement to receive only frozen crops from Kenya. The approval of Kakuzi export of fresh avocados to China and the audit by Kephis of several other firms can be regarded as a step towards increased export of agricultural goods to China and towards reduced trade deficit with Beijing.

The Chinese Citic Dicastal puts the package in Morocco

The Chinese Citic Dicastal puts the package in Morocco

The project involves building an annual production line of 5 million compression cast aluminum parts, including automotive chassis spindle products in addition to aluminum rims, which Dicastal has been manufacturing for almost three years. This time Dicastal has decided to enrich its products to be manufactured in Morocco with new technology.

The Covid crisis has not got the better of Chinese investments in Morocco. A 3rd Dicastal factory has just been launched on Wednesday by the Minister of Industry and Trade, Ryad Mezzour, in the Kenitra free zone in the presence of the Chinese ambassador to Morocco. A kick-off was also marked by the signing by videoconference of an investment agreement with the Chinese headquarters of this large structure whose construction kick-off has also just been given.

As the government official explains, this investment is intended for “high-end parts that are also aimed at high-end vehicles”. In addition, the group is developing, as detailed by the Minister, its 3rd factory after “only 3 years of presence in Morocco”. “In the first two factories, it produces 6 million aluminum rims which it exports mainly to the United States”, continues Mr. Mezzour who highlights the production, today, of high-tech parts, chassis, and aluminum motors. These products will be, as he details, “exported mainly to Europe. They will be essential parts in high-end vehicles”. “This project will make it possible to employ 766 Moroccan men and women directly with an investment volume estimated at 2 billion DH”, advances the minister. For his part, the Chinese ambassador to Morocco, Li Changlin, said: “The Sino-Moroccan cooperation project Dicastal Morocco Africa, carried out by the Citic Dicastal group, is the largest of its kind that emerged after the visit in 2016 in China and the establishment of the strategic partnership between the two countries”. “Similarly, it is the largest Chinese investment in Africa,” adds the diplomat who recalls, in turn, the convention of the “Belt and Road” plan signed in January 2000 between the two countries. Better still, the Dicastal plant is, in his view, “the first major project since the signing of this document”.

Production of 5 million pieces per year

In this regard, the group’s vice president, Mei Xinglong, reveals from China that “the project is to build an annual production line of 5 million pieces of compression cast aluminum, in particular, the rocket products for automotive chassis in more aluminum rims than Dicastal has been making for almost three years. This time Dicastal has decided to enrich its products to be manufactured in Morocco with new technology”. And that’s not all! “The project will also serve to supply the European market,” he adds, hoping that this project would contribute to the development of the automotive sector in Morocco.

Creation of 766 new jobs

In addition to this new plant, two others were launched in 2019 and 2020 for the production of six million aluminum rims per year. For the time being, the investment of the Citic Dicastal group in Morocco has reached 350 million Euros, thus creating 1350 jobs. By 2022, the ministry with MedZ is launching the construction of the 3rd factory for the production of aluminum rims for 180 million Euros. Spread over an area of 20,000 m² in a 12-hectare site, this project called “Dika Morroco Castings – DMC” will provide Morocco, in six months from its first plant producing cast aluminum components for power trains and chassis. This project, with a production capacity of 10 million units, will be deployed in two phases and will create 766 new direct jobs. Even better, 90% of the parts will be for export.

Launching Ceremony of the China-aided Project of Rehabilitation of the Sierra Leone National Stadium

Launching Ceremony of the China-aided Project of Rehabilitation of the Sierra Leone National Stadium

On February 25, 2022, the Launching Ceremony of the China-aided Project of Rehabilitation of the Sierra Leone National Stadium was held in Freetown. H.E. Hu Zhangliang, Chinese Ambassador to Sierra Leone, Honorable Minister of Planning and Economic Development Dr. Francis Mustapha Kaikai, Honorable Minister of Sports Mr. Ibrahim Nyelenkeh and other distinguished ladies and gentlemen attended the ceremony.

Ambassador Hu said that H.E. President Xi Jinping attaches great importance to the development of China-Sierra Leone relations. He pointed out that the rehabilitation of the stadium is another milestone in the course of China-Sierra Leone cordial relationship and practical cooperation. Ambassador Hu averred that, after the rehabilitation, the stadium will be brand new and contribute immensely again to sports development in Sierra Leone. The Ambassador said that the Chinese side will as always demonstrate utmost sincerity to Sierra Leone while conducting cooperation, walk the talk, keep promise, let facts speak for themselves and prove herself to be a reliable friend instead of paying lip services or imposing her own will onto others.

Honorable Minister Kaikai extended sincere thanks to H.E. President Xi Jinping and the Chinese government and people on behalf of H.E. President Julius Maada Bio and the government and people of Sierra Leone. He said that China is a true friend and the past 50 years of Sierra Leone-China relationship is based on mutual respect, trust, unity of direction, development and promotion of common interest. He assured the Ambassador that the Sierra Leonean side will continue to work closely with the Chinese side to further promote the high quality friendly relations between the two countries.

Honorable Minister Ibrahim Nyelenkeh and other dignitaries expressed their sincere gratitude and appreciation to the Chinese government and people for the great support to sports development in Sierra Leone. They looked forward to the hand over of the rehabilitated stadium after the agreed two years’ period.

Honorable Minister Kaikai and Ambassador Hu then jointly turned the sod to officially launch the Rehabilitation Project.

The National Stadium was built by China for Sierra Leone under the former’s government grant and put into use in 1979. The rehabilitation work will include the restoration, reinforcement and redecoration of the main stadium, the swimming pool and its ancillary facilities, the renovation of the athletes’ hostel, the construction of more than 1,200 square meters of new buildings and facilities, the renewal of drainage, power distribution, ventilation and air conditioning, the installation of a new display screen, artificial turf, synthetic rubber racing track and new lighting equipment, etc. The 572-square-meter ring road surrounding the stadium will also be refurbished.

By then, the stadium will be revitalized to one of the most modern and comprehensive stadiums in Africa, extending its service life by at least another 30 years and creating conditions for Sierra Leone to host sports events of international standards, including the Africa Cup of Nations in the future.

Spreading the Chinese Culture to the world

Spreading the Chinese Culture to the world

This week I am very touched, especially because we have five schools around the world where children can learn simple Chinese from the age of five. Although there are Confucius institutes around the world, there has never been a place where children from five to twelve can learn the Chinese language.   This is the first time that I did it, thanks to everyone’s support and help. I don’t have a lot of money but I’m very passionate about spreading Chinese culture. 

Our leader said, If you want to be my friend, You have to know me first. Language barrier has always been the biggest obstacle in China-African relations. If Africans can speak Chinese, they will understand Chinese people and will love china more and Chinese people will also understand them better. I believe that the future of the world belongs to children, and we need to start from the children. In the future, the friendship, cooperation, and development of the Chinese and African people will be carried on by the children. It will be wonderful if children can start learning simple Chinese at a younger age so that at the age of 12 and above, they will start studying more professionally, just like in Confucius institute and universities, and will not be afraid to have more in-depth knowledge. This way, when some people want to travel to china they will know where to go, where to do business and how to bargain. Students will also know how to make purchases. I think this is my approach and our Chinese Ambassador in Sierra Leone and the Deputy Minister of Education of the State Council are also very supportive.

I am grateful to the Confucius Institute for arranging professional teachers to help us start teaching children and to train our teachers. I would also like to thank the leadership and team of the Chinese People’s Association for Foreign Affairs, which has been helping me with this in Sierra Leone. On behalf of the SCAFA, I want to thank them for all the help they have given me in China. I also want to thank Simao (Beijing) Culture and Art Co., Ltd., my brother Cheng Zhonghe, Luo Wen, Nika, Yego, all of you.

Wow a great history I made for our beloved Africa and China in ( Sierra Leone ). The first in history to have 5 to start this week smallsmallchinese ( simple way of vocabulary chinese/ English in the world.ago from 5to 12 or 13years. Am proud but I really want to thank all the people that help me with out ur help my ideas should be nothing. So thx u all. And as I Alway sayI’ll continue my dreams” to make Africa China proud”. Pls share and I look forward to work with everyone that have the same thinking . It will be all over Africa country’s soon or later need ur support. Thank you Xiexie. Pls check on all out social media links. Type( smallsmallchinese.) Alway smile