NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 4 – The government is seeking to raise the minimum capital investment for international investors in various sectors from the current $100,000 (Sh8.7 million) to $300,000 (Sh26 million).
The Kenya Investment Authority Managing Director Moses Ikiara said some of the sectors to be raised will be those that require heavy capital investment that include: oil and gas, energy, construction, agriculture as well as mining, while excluding Information Communication and Technology (ICT).
“There are some sectors if you put a very high minimum capital then you will be unrealistic since they are knowledge intensive. We are in discussion to see what we will raise and what we will hold,” Ikiara explained.
He told Capital FM Business in an interview that the current $100,000 minimum capital is not at par with other East African countries with Uganda and Rwanda playing at $250,000 (Sh21.9 million).
“Some other countries even have $300,000 (Sh26 million). If we keep ours at $100,000 (Sh8.7 million) we are allowing international investors to come in to do small projects that could be done by Kenyans,” he said.
This comes as Kenya registers growth in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) despite insecurity challenges that have rocked the country with the country receiving a total of Sh313 billion in 2013, which was four times more than the amount received in 2012.
Already, the country has received Sh29 billion as of April 31, 2014 and pointed out that the medium term would look good with manufacturing, agriculture, energy, mining, oil and construction being the leading sectors in Foreign Direct Investment inflows.
Among the companies set to invest include Carrefour (a French multinational retailer) Radisson Blu and Park Inn Hotel, Business Connexion (ICT service provider based in South Africa), as well as Imperial Health Science (healthcare supply chain based in SA) that is set to invest Sh1.7 billion by 2015.
Kenya has been receiving international investors, including a recent delegation from Germany that is keen on investing in various sectors in the country.
The Kenya Investment Authority also hosted a business delegation from Sumitomo Chemicals Group, Japan that is exploring setting up a manufacturing plant for production of liquid fertilizers, agricultural pesticides and other horticultural inputs.
Korea Trade Investment Promotion Agency also plans to invest in three major cities in the country that include Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu where they will establish an industry in each city in bid to give Kenyans quality and affordable products.