Much of Africa is quickly growting into a service economy, but in many cases without an adequately developed manufacturing and conersion industry, which for otherwise poor countirs is not sustainable since they will always export low-priced raw materials and semi-processed goods and import highly priced finished products.
A well developed manufacturing industry is a profound asset for any national economy. In Kenya, for example, the manufacturing industry contributes 11.5% to GDP, and employs just under 15% of the country’s total employment.
Manufactured exports to other African countries account for over 48% of Kenya’s total exports, with 26% of this going to countries within East Africa.
Kenya’s exports to the Eastern Africa market, however, translate to only 7% of the region’s USD 11.4 billion trade value, which points to the enormous potential in the region if the local manufacturing industry can raise its level of competitiveness.