This sector is mainly agro based at the moment and plays an important role in adding value to agricultural output by providing forward and backward linkages with agricultural sector. However, there is a shift to export oriented manufacturing as the main thrust of Kenya's industrial policy since the country aims to raise the share of products in the regional market from 7% to 15 % and develop niche products for existing and new markets.
Kenya is promoting development of Special Economic Zones (SEZs), Industrial Parks, Industrial Clusters, promotion of small and medium scale manufacturing firms, development of niche products, commercialization of research and development results.
In addition to high demand for locally manufactured goods, regional markets are accessible for Kenya’s manufactured goods owing to its membership to two key regional economic blocs the East African Community (EAC) and Common Market for East and Southern Africa (COMESA). Furthermore, Kenya is one of the first Sub Saharan countries eligible to export its textile products to the USA under the provisions of the African Growth Opportunity Act (AGOA).