Kenya needs better investment climate

December 11, 2009

, NYAHURURU, Kenya, Dec 11 – The lack of proper investment policies in the country has been cited as a major stumbling block towards the realisation of Kenya’s development agenda.

According to the Kenya Investment Authority (KIA) Managing Director Susan Kikwai, there is a need for development stakeholders to come up with suitable ventures that will help the country move forward and enable it alleviate poverty by increasing investment opportunities.

 “We need to provide exceptional services to attract, facilitate, retain and expand investments in Kenya and that is why Kenya Investment Authority is working on modalities to ensure speedy entry of new investments and expansion of existing ones,” she said.

She observed that few investors have already shown interest in the existing policies to establish their area of interest but due to bureaucratic red tape in the government most investors shy away.

The MD noted that while ensuring speedy approval and licensing of new investments, the Investment Promotion Centre (IPC) was looking at policy constraints pertaining to interim business entry and operations to ensure that more Kenyans are assured of their investment security.

She spoke at the Ol-Joro-orok Agricultural Training Centre in Nyandarua district during an investment forum for local leaders where she expressed KIA’s commitment to creating a one-stop-shop where investors would obtain all necessary approvals, licenses, certificates, permits and authorisations under one roof.

She said this was aimed at reducing delays in accruing economic benefits such as employment, revenue, technology transfer, forex earnings and general diversification of Kenyas economic base.

“This will enable Kenya realise the latest policy on Vision 2030 to making it a middle income country by the 2030 whereby the policy will act as a driving force to direct all activities and programmes meeting the laid down objectives,” she told the participants.

Speaking while opening the one-day forum, Western Central regional Commissioner Wycliffe Ogalo called on young investors to consider looking into the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) to enable them come up with products that will compete in the global market while embracing the new technology.

He said limited ICT skills was a bigger challenge to most investors adding that the government had already set up ICT villages in all the constituencies to enable locals get access to information they wish to look for at the shortest time possible.

Kinagop MP David Ngugi who also addressed the forum observed that there was a dire need to tap all professionals who would enable the locals get adequate advice on investments and help them keep abreast with the ever changing global economy.

He said most professionals opt to move out of the country to look for jobs and other greener pasture saying the country was losing a lot of skilled human resource.

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