Mombasa — President Yoweri Museveni will be the first visiting head of state to take the Makadara Express train on the new Standard Gauge Railway from Mombasa to Nairobi in Kenya.
This was confirmed yesterday after discussions on day two of a three-day state visit where Museveni and host President Uhuru Kenyatta held discussions that focused on how to strengthen political, social and economic ties.
"I thank President Uhuru Kenyatta for inviting me on this visit. I must commend him for his Pan-African credentials and working tirelessly towards easing trade between Kenya and Uganda. I think his appreciation of these issues has to do with his background in business," Museveni said on Wednesday.
"I also gladly look forward to using the train on the Standard Gauge Railway from Mombasa to Nairobi tomorrow. It should take me only four hours on a journey of over 480kms. Apparently, I will be the first visiting head of state to use this facility. I am honoured."
President Kenyatta commended the Government and the people of Uganda for their trust and continued use of the Port of Mombasa.
"I wish to express my Government's full commitment to continue improving service delivery at the Port. I am pleased to report that the time taken to transport cargo between Mombasa and Nairobi has significantly reduced with the full operationalization of the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) between Mombasa and Nairobi," Kenyatta said.
The Kenyan leader invited his Ugandan counterpart to join in the joint development of the SGR to ensure that the line continues all the way to Kampala as envisioned.
Kenya agreed to let Uganda increase its sugar exports to Kenya from 36,000 metric tonnes to 90,000 metric tonnes annually.
Uganda will resume exporting poultry to Kenya within a week from now.
Uganda will immediately lift the ban on beef imports from Kenya, since the mad cow disease that occasioned this ban is no more.
Dairy producers will have less paperwork to do in order to export to Kenya.