Canada - Kenya Relations

Canada - Kenya Relations

Canada established diplomatic relations with Kenya in 1963 following its independence. In Kenya, Canada maintains a High Commission in Nairobi, which is Canada's largest mission in Africa. The High Commission is also accredited to Burundi, Rwanda, Somalia, and Uganda, as well as to the United Nations Environment Programme and UN-Habitat. Kenya is represented in Canada by a High Commission in Ottawa.

Canada and Kenya have an excellent relationship founded on a range of shared interests, and are committed to strengthening collaboration, including on poverty reduction, sustainable economic growth, the empowerment of women and girls, supporting refugees, and regional security and stability. In 2019, Canada and Kenya held the first meeting of the Binational Commission, created to strengthen collaboration across a range of shared interests.

Kenya has hosted the International Peace Support Training Centre (IPSTC) in Nairobi since 2007, which benefits from Canadian support. Kenya has been a member of Canada’s Military Training and Cooperation Programme since 1970, with 443 of Kenyan officers trained as of 2018. There is one Canadian Forces officer deployed full time at the IPSTC in Nairobi.

International assistance

In 2017-18, Canada provided $83.84 million in international assistance to Kenya. Canada’s international assistance is well aligned with Kenya’s overarching Vision 2030 strategy, and our support is helping Kenyans by:

  • increasing employment and economic opportunities, especially for women
  • improving access to quality health care for mothers and children
  • providing a safe, quality learning environment for children, especially girls

Canadian funding for humanitarian assistance in Kenya is based on need, and includes support for UN agencies, the Red Cross Movement, and non-governmental organizations to meet the needs of Kenyans affected by chronic drought and food insecurity, as well as the large populations of Somali and South Sudanese refugees living in the country.  

Commercial relations

Canada has a well-established trade relationship with Kenya. In 2018, two-way merchandise trade reached $174.6 million. This consisted of $141.4 million in exports to Kenya and $33.2 million in imports from Kenya. Exports to Kenya mainly include vehicles and equipment, vegetable products, and textile products. Imports from Kenya are primarily vegetable products and textile products.


June 2019