NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 3 – President Uhuru Kenyatta on Thursday told Turkish business people that doing business in Kenya is a smart choice for all investors.
He advised the business leaders who are visiting the country in the company of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan that doing business in Kenya is a strategic move given the country’s location and the ease of doing business.
He said Kenya’s emerging middle class is also an attractive market coupled with the country’s rich human resource capital.
“Doing business here is smart, and doing it in Kenya is smarter considering our strategic geographic location, advanced financial and telecommunications sectors, and our human resource capacity,” said President Kenyatta.
President Kenyatta, who spoke when he officially opened the Kenya-Turkey Business Forum at the Villa Rosa Kempinski Hotel, enumerated more reasons to convince the more than 135 business executives why they should do business in Kenya.
He said one of the biggest reasons was Kenya’s market-size and its geographic location.
The Head of State said Kenya is a gate way to the giant market created by the tripartite agreement signed by over 25 countries of the East African Community, the Southern African Development Community, and Common Market for East Southern Africa.
“At over 600 million people-which is 8 percent of the world’s population- the market that an operational tripartite agreement creates is one of the largest in the world,” said President Kenyatta.
President Kenyatta said the other reason to do business in Kenya is that the cost of doing business in country is decreasing and will continue to go down significantly in the medium and long term.
He said some of Kenya’s biggest priority investment areas have been infrastructure and energy.
“We’ve built thousands of kilometres of tarmac road and we’ve built more roads in the last 3 years, than we did in the first 50 years of our independence,” said the President.
The President said Kenya is committed to the dream of an East Africa that is completely connected whether by road, rail or air – and the LAPSSET projects are intent on achieving that project.
Another reason President Kenyatta cited is the substantial regulatory reform that has made business operations in Kenya quicker, easier and also less prone to being undermined through corruption.
“We’ve engaged in some significant legislative reform and through these changes, we’ve seen our World Bank ease of doing business indicators improve,” said the President.
He added that the government is also seeking to move many bureaucratic processes online through e-Government portals and initiatives.
President Erdogan said Kenya is a strategic partner considering its geographical location and being the gateway to East and Central Africa.
He further said that Turkey will collaborate with Kenya in creating conducive business environment for their investment and trade.
Other areas of business the Turkish leader expressed desire for his countrymen to invest include infrastructure development, tourism and mining.
The Turkish president described his visit alongside Turkey’s high-ranking government officials and prominent businessmen as a historic one, aimed at promoting closer collaboration with allies in Africa, to “come up with solutions to common challenges and explore equally beneficial opportunities”
The Turkish President is accompanied by a delegation of 135 business people.