Exploring Kenya’s Automotive Market


Kenya stands as East Africa’s foremost business and transportation hub, with Mombasa Port facilitating 80% of the region’s trade. The nation’s ambitious Kenya Vision 2030 aims for a transformation into a middle-income country with a high quality of life for all citizens, emphasizing industrialization and environmental sustainability.

Key Economic Indicators:

Country Name: The Republic of Kenya

Population: 53 million

GDP Annual Growth: 7.1%

GDP Per Capita: $2,090

Inflation Rate: 6.3%

Interest Rate (AVG): 8.75%

Government Debt to GDP ratio (AVG): 70%

Exchange Rate: 1 USD = 146.90 Kenyan Shilling

Strategic Imperatives: Exporters targeting the Kenyan market must adopt a focused approach, conducting thorough market research and understanding local preferences. Developing quality products at competitive prices is crucial, alongside forging strategic partnerships to navigate the dynamic market landscape.

Export Potential to Kenya: Kenya presents opportunities for exporters, particularly in automotive batteries, tyres, spare parts, ball bearings, water pumps, and electronics. African buyers, often price-sensitive, seek low-cost goods, presenting a niche market for exporters.

Tariff Structure:Kenya maintains a favorable tariff structure for the import of vehicles, tractor parts and accessories, with average tariffs ranging from 2.4% to 23.1%. This have to study in accordingly your H.S. Code and see your Kenya market potential.

Market Analysis: Examining Kenya import trends, we observe a substantial demand for vehicles and related accessories, with top importing countries including Japan, India, China, South Africa & Thailand, Germany, United Kingdom, Brazil, Turkey, Korea and Mexico. Delving deeper into specific product categories, we identify H.S. Code 87.., encompassing parts and accessories for tractors and motor vehicles, as a promising avenue for export expansion.

In conclusion, Kenya’s automotive market offers ample opportunities for exporters willing to tap into its burgeoning economy. With the right strategy and a keen understanding of local dynamics, exporters can establish a strong foothold.

By Mashood Khan :  Director – Mehran Commercial Enterprises / Expert Auto Sector / Former Chairman PAAPAM