Ethiopia and Kenya enjoy longstanding and excellent bilateral relations. The official diplomatic relations of the two countries dates to 1954 when Ethiopia established its Honorary Consulate office in Kenya. Ethiopia appointed its first Ambassador to Kenya in 1961 and Kenya opened its Embassy in Ethiopia in 1967.
The two countries established cooperation mechanisms that are the Ethio-Kenya Joint Ministerial Commission and the Joint Border Administrators’ and Commissioners' meeting which so far held 35 and 32 meetings, respectively.
The two countries heads of State and Government made various exchanges of State and Official visits, in a bid to strengthen the bilateral relations of the two countries.
A. from Addis Ababa to Nairobi different State and Official visits were made. These Include:-
o H.E Mrs. Sahle-Work Zewde's, President of FDRE, State Visit to Kenya on May 14, 2019
o H.E Dr. Abiy Ahmed's, Prime Minister of FDRE, State Visit to Kenya on April 6- 7, 2018
o H.E Ato Hailemariam Desalegn's, former Prime Minister of FDRE, State Visit to Kenya on Nov 21, 2012
o H.E Ato Meles Zenawi's, late former Prime Minister of FDRE, State Visit to Kenya on March 2-3, 2012, and an Official Visit on March 9, 2000, respectively.
B. from Nairobi to Addis Ababa different State and Official visit was made. These Include:-
o H.E Mr. Uhuru Kenyatta President of Republic of Kenya paid an Official Visit to Ethiopia in October 10-11,2019, March 2-3, 2019 and March 2014
o H.E. Mwai Kibaki visited Ethiopia in March 2005
o H.E. Daniel Arap Moi paid an Official Visit to Ethiopia in November 1991 immediately after EPRDF took State power in Ethiopia.
In July 1997, relations between the two countries gained new momentum following the 31st Joint Ministerial Commission (JMC) meeting when numerous MoU’s on social, political and economic fields were signed.
During the 34th JMC meeting, which was held in Nairobi in November 2012 both parties agreed to elevate the JMC to a Summit level; and signed the Special Status Agreement (SSA) with the aim of elevating the economic relations between the two countries to a higher level.
And also 35th JMC meeting which was held in Nairobi in June 2016 stressed the implementation of SSA and commanded further ways to strengthen the relations in different sectors: Education, Health, Agriculture, Security, Transport, Trade, etc. The SSA gave special priority to Trade and Investment promotion, Infrastructure Development, and Food security and sustainable livelihoods.
The positive role played by two countries in line with IGAD’s vision to bring sustainable peace and regional integration in a region is vital for both countries. The two countries enjoy holding common positions at regional, continental and global forums on issues of mutual concern.