Industrial sector lacks blueprint for development

June 4, 2012
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Private sector development advisor, Raphael Mwai said the last survey was carried out 35 years ago/FILE
NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 4 – There is urgent need for the government through the Ministry of Trade and Ministry of Industrialisation to carry out a specific survey for proper development of the industrial sector. 

Private sector development advisor, Raphael Mwai said the last survey was carried out 35 years ago.       

Speaking at a private sector development workshop in Nairobi on Monday, Mwai said lack of proper information on the challenges facing the industrial sector has led to duplication of projects by various relevant ministries and Kenya Private Sector Alliance. 

He said this has led to the sector remaining stagnant only contributing10 percent to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for the last 20 years, which way below its potential of above 30 percent.

“Obviously you have to know the profile of the industries because due to liberalisation, a lot of industries were not able to cope with the demands of the new era. And therefore this has affected their growth. So there is a need to stimulate, through incentives and reducing the cost of doing business. But we can’t implement all these without knowing the industry better,” Mwai said.                     

Special Economic Zones Director in the Ministry of Trade Philip Nderitu however said apart from carrying out the survey soon, his ministry will come up with policies that will focus on catalyzing private sector growth by reducing the cost of doing business, increase trade and competitiveness and also productivity.

“What we need is very clear working cooperation between the private sector institutions and the department of the private sector development in the Ministry of Trade, which I would say is the arm of the government that should be interfacing with the private sector. This is to make sure that issues that are being raised by the private sector are directly addressed by the government,” Nderitu added.      

The workshop, organised by the Ministry of Trade was aimed at looking for ways of reviving the five goals of the Private Sector Development Strategy (PSDS) which was officially launched in 2007.

The goals include creating an enabling business environment for the private sector, public sector to serve more of the interest of the private sector, to help private sector stakeholders get external markets for their products, stimulate competitiveness and finally to stimulate value addition and financial access.

“The challenge has been to first to understand the whole concept of PSDS, to mobilise adequate resources, to implement all these goals, and lack of technical capacity to implement the strategy,” Nderitu added.

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