President William Ruto on Thursday met and held talks with Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed in Addis Ababa after he jetted out to the neighbouring country on Wednesday.

Dr Ruto says the meeting focused on the need to increase trade across the borders of the two countries and foster the socio-economic development of their respective citizens.

“Kenya is keen on exploiting its long-standing relations and proximity with Ethiopia to increase cross-border trade,” President Ruto said.

The Kenyan Head of State undertook to work closely with the Ethiopian Premier revise the priorities of the two neighbouring nations in their quest to fast track national development.

“Kenya-Ethiopia partnership is a cornerstone of our mutual benefit and regional stability,” added Dr Ruto.

Speaking at Abiy’s office in Addis Ababa, he also challenged his Ethiopian counterpart to take advantage of the Lamu Port to foster development in the Southern part of Ethiopia.

“The relations between Kenya and Ethiopia is established on strong foundations and cordial co-operations focused on matters of mutual interest,” added the Ethiopian Prime Minister.

President Ruto had been invited to Addis Ababa by PM Abiy to also witness the official launch of Safaricom Ethiopia to rival the dominance of the state-owned Ethio Telecom.