, NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 29 – Kenya’s ranking in the just released Doing Business Report 2015 by World Bank, could have been much better if numerous reforms by the government so far were captured.
This is according to Industrialisation and Enterprise Development Cabinet Secretary Adan Mohamed who says the government has come up with various reforms in the last six to nine months which have not been reflected in the outcome of the global survey.
Speaking after the release of the report at his office on Wednesday, the CS however said the government is committed to ensure that the mentioned challenges still facing investors are addressed going forward.
“A lot of activities that you would have seen have not been reflected because of the timing of when the survey was done. So it is really a very ‘historic data’ that was used to come up with some of these particular activities,” Mohamed noted.
Kenya has shown a slight improvement in the latest report, standing at position 136 out of 189 countries globally from 137 in the 2014 report.
Without dismissing the report the, Mohamed said some of the reforms by the government, for instance reducing the period for electricity connections and business registrations, have not been adjusted in the report.
“Starting a business, it shows here that it takes 30 days to register. But today if you go the AGs (Attorney General) office and try and register a company, we are able to register in 24 hours. Getting electricity has been highlighted as taking 158 days. But you all know the reforms that are going on in the energy sector and today we are able to connect within 20 to 30 days on average,” Mohamed said.
Other reforms includes the launch of the National Electronic Single Window System in May this year, launch of the Mombasa Community Port Charter, digitisation of land records, digitization of company records, online i-Tax system, reduction of weighbridges on the Mombasa-Malaba corridor to four including Mariakani, Mlolongo, Gilgil and Malaba.
The government is hoping that some of the changes that will be reflected in the next reports so that the investors can get the actual feel of what is happening in Kenya.
“We are really optimistic and very certain that some of the reforms, if captured, by the World Bank and the team would be able to show a totally different picture of what needs to be done,” Mohamed said.
On her part, Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA) Carole Kariuki appreciated the ongoing reforms and expressed confidence that the country was on the right path.
She has called on the need for investors to also consider other report by various organisations other than the World Bank report for better planning.
“This is not conclusive but is also very important for us because it helps us to see some of the areas that we are not doing well and we are able to work on them,” Kariuki said.
A similar ranking on the Global Competitiveness Index by the World Economic Forum improved Kenya’s ranking by 16 positions to 90 this year up from 106 two years ago.
Early this month the government through the Industrialisation Ministry established a Business Environment Delivery Unit aimed at addressing challenges facing investors in the country.
Kenya is now targeting position 20 in the ease of doing business annual rankings by the year 2020.