Facts about trade between Kenya and US

There are ongoing deliberations of Kenya having a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the USA, with pundits arguing that it may have a devastating blow to Kenyans, considering the AGOA window that traders enjoy.

USA does not have any FTA with a Sub-Saharan African country. In Africa, it has one with Morocco, signed in 2004 which came into effect in 2006.

Kenya is currently the U.S.‘s 98th largest goods trading partner with $1.0 billion in total (two way) goods trade during 2018. Goods exports totaled $365 million; goods imports totaled $644 million.


  • Kenya was the United States’ 110th largest goods export market in 2018.
  • U.S. goods exports to Kenya in 2018 were $365 million, down 19.7 per cent ($89 million) from 2017 and down 17.5 per cent from 2008.
  • The top export categories (2-digit HS) in 2018 were: aircraft ($103 million), machinery ($41 million), plastics ($37 million), electrical machinery ($31 million), and special other (repairs) ($16 million).
  • U.S. total exports of agricultural products to Kenya totaled $37 million in 2018. Leading domestic export categories include: coarse grains (ex. corn) ($10 million), wheat ($6 million), pulses ($5 million), vegetable oils (ex. soybean) ($3 million), and planting seeds ($3 million).


  • Kenya was the United States’ 85th largest supplier of goods imports in 2018.
  • U.S. goods imports from Kenya totaled $644 million in 2018, up 12.6 per cent ($72 million) from 2017, and up 87.5 per cent from 2008.
  • The top import categories (2-digit HS) in 2018 were: woven apparel ($240 million), knit apparel ($153 million), edible fruit & nuts (cocoa, brazil, cashew) ($74 million), special other (returns) ($55 million), and coffee, tea & spice (coffee) ($50 million).
  • U.S. total imports of agricultural products from Kenya totaled $154 million in 2018. Leading categories include: tree nuts ($75 million), coffee, unroasted ($43 million), tea, including herb ($17 million), essential oils ($11 million), and other vegetable oils ($3 million).


U.S. Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in Kenya (stock) was $405 million in 2017, a 7.5 per cent decrease from 2016.

There is no information on the distribution of U.S. FDI in Kenya.

No data on Kenya’s FDI in the U.S. are available. There is no information on the distribution of Kenya FDI in the U.S

Presently, most of Kenya‘s export to the United States enjoy duty-free access under the African Growth Opportunities Act (AGOA). Any move to discontinue AGOA would deal a devastating blow to the Kenyan economy.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.