, NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 21 – Thirteen counties in the Lake Region have unveiled a joint economic plan aimed at catalyzing the region’s economic development through targeted collective investments.
The Lake Region Economic Blueprint is expected to act as a one-stop shop for investors seeking opportunities in the region.
It identifies seven strategic intervention areas, namely Agriculture, Tourism, Education, Health, ICT, Financial Services and Infrastructure.
“While counties are emerging as key units of economic development, they stood to gain greatly by pooling individual resources for strategic initiatives,” outgoing Council of Governors Chairman Isaac Ruto said during the second National Devolution Conference in Kisumu on Tuesday.
The economic blue print was launched by President Uhuru Kenyatta after officially opening the conference which ends on Thursday.
For each of the intervention areas, the blueprint has designated a flagship project to be implemented in the region which include an agricultural commodities exchange, a regional bank, specialist hospitals and educational centers of excellence in each county, creating a Lake region ring road and tourism circuit.
The bloc is made up of Bungoma, Busia, Homa Bay, Kakamega, Kisii, Kisumu, Migori, Nyamira, Siaya and Vihiga. Three other counties, Bomet, Trans Nzoia and Kericho have agreed to be part of the regional blueprint.
According to Kisumu Jack Ranguma, the blueprint will enable individual counties that are sometimes too small to leverage economies of scale, to jointly implement massive projects.
“Many counties are grappling with insufficient resources for meeting competing needs in the county. This is the reason we in the Lake Basin came together to join forces and pull together,” Ranguma added.
The blueprint was developed through a consultative process by the county governments as well as members of the public and coordinated by Deloitte East Africa. It also drew from individual counties’ integrated development plans.
With the launch of the economic blueprint, the counties now plan to set up a secretariat to coordinate its implementation.
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