• Proactive protection

    Proactive protection

    A KES37.5 million safe-trading zone is being set up in western Kenya’s Busia county to curb the spread of COVID-19 and improve cross-border trade, which has been adversely affected due to restrictions imposed in response to the pandemic.

    The Safe Trade Market, a project by not-for-profit organisation TradeMark East Africa (TMEA) and the county government of Busia, will enable small-scale traders to continue trading in a safe and hygienic market. A core focus of the project will be assisting women traders, who have been forced to shut down due to COVID-19 protocols, to resume business. The project, at the Soko Posta Grounds in Busia on the border with Uganda, will accommodate 300 traders and take four months to build.

    According to Kevit Desai, principal secretary in the state department of the East African Community, the intergovernmental association is committed to building the capacity of cross-border traders, who are key to improving inter-regional trade.

    The Safe Trade Zone project is part of TMEA’s Safe Trade Emergency Facility, a US$23 million programme designed to support East African governments to mitigate the economic impacts of the pandemic and to respond to its health risks. The zones provide PPE to frontline operations at ports and borders, and offer technological solutions and supply chain support.

    17 August 2021
    Image: Gallo/Getty Images