NAIROBI, August 7 – Prime Minister Raila Odinga has finally laid out the first set of recommendations that will help the country achieve a targeted 10 percent GDP growth in the next three years.
Briefing the press on the outcome of the private sector and government round table meetings that began on Tuesday, Odinga announced that a delivery unit would be formed in his office to deliver on all the key priority issues discussed.
“The Unit is being created to work with Cabinet committees to deliver on key priority issues. It will be structured around issues, not ministries, and will involve all stakeholders. There are six Cabinet committees; Finance, Administration and Planning, Infrastructure Services, Security Productive Sectors, and Public Private Partnership,” the Prime Minister announced.
“We are discussing the setting up of a business co-ordination unit within the delivery unit where sector specialists will form a team that will identify the mission, set goals, and define the timelines of activities.”
Other key proposals in this first round table meeting included the formation of a joint committee with the private sector within two weeks to examine all proposals of harmonisation and implementation through the Treasury, while the Trade Ministry was mandated to integrate the private sector as partners in all missions to promote investment and market access, and provide market infrastructure for retail and wholesale markets starting September.
In the agricultural sector, the government committed to facilitate the Africa Finance Corporation (AFC) to access domestic and offshore lending at eight percent and get banks to devote a certain percentage of lending to agriculture.
On infrastructure, the Prime Minister ordered that inspection points on the northern corridor be reduced from the current 46 to 15 with immediate effect, and promised that the Roads Ministry would restore Enterprise Road in the next eight months and weighbridges in the country would be reduced to two.
Odinga further explained that the private sector would be included in all initiatives to market the country abroad.
“It was pointed out that the funds currently set aside to market the country as an investment and tourism destination currently are very low, but the issue will be addressed in the supplementary budgets that will be out soon,” he said.
The PM stated that the government in collaboration with the private sector plans to organise several investment conferences starting from next month, not forgetting to mention that the national land policy will be given priority through information management systems.
He pledged that within one year all ports would be working 24 hours a day.
And on the Public Private Partnership framework to guide this marriage, Odinga committed that the rules would be out soon.
“We are working on these guidelines and they should be out any time soon.”