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Kibaki assures private sector of Govt assistance

NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 15 – President Mwai Kibaki has expressed the Government\’s commitment in strengthening policy dialogue with the private sector in order to foster a closer working relationship that will facilitate implementation of priority programmes.

The President who was speaking during a meeting with members of the Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA) said the partnership between the public and private sectors was vital in sustaining growth and jobs amid the global financial crisis.

The Head of State advised the private sector alliance to draw specific proposals on trade barriers that need be addressed for further discussion and implementation by the Coalition Government.

The President said the Government welcomed constructive criticism by the private sector for corrective measures to be taken where necessary.

The Head of State once more assured Kenyans that the partners in the Grand Coalition Government would soon meet to iron out issues that portray the government as divided saying matters of national importance should always take precedence.

"We will soon have a meeting among those in Government and discuss what we must do for the Kenyan people. We are one government and are determined to serve the people. I am confident that we will resolve any differences that we may have because service to the nation must come first," said President Kibaki

 President Kibaki urged leaders to always tell Kenyans the truth so as to correct the perception that the Coalition Government was divided.

On the Migingo Island issue, President Kibaki said Kenya and Uganda had agreed to carry out a joint border survey in order to come up with an amicable solution to the dispute which he said should not be let to distract regional integration plans. Uganda is currently Kenya\’s largest trading partner.

During the round table meeting, KEPSA Chairman Steven Smith outlined various issues they would like government to address.

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Smith called for streamlining of VAT refunds, harmonisation of trade levies and removal of other bottlenecks encountered by the business community.

The Chairman thanked the Government for guaranteeing conducive atmosphere for investors to conduct business in the Country.

The private sector leaders want the necessary mechanisms to be put in place to harvest surface water for irrigation to improve on food production in the country.

They assured the President that the private sector would continue collaborating with the Government in implementation of the Vision 2030 goals.

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