The Report: Kenya 2017

  • ID: 4437463
  • Country Profile
  • Region: Kenya
  • 220 Pages
  • Oxford Business Group
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The largest economy in the EAC, Kenya is a major player in both the region and sub-Saharan Africa as a whole.

Over the past few decades its market has transformed from being largely agrarian into one of the most diversified and innovative on the continent, even developing a thriving technology sector that some have dubbed the Silicon Savannah. However, the nation is not without its challenges, and it remains a country of extremes with a largely undeveloped arid north.

Job creation, particularly for the country’s large youth population, is low, sustaining a large informal economy. Kenya benefits from a strong agricultural sector, but this leaves it exposed to climate volatility, and disparities in rural development.

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COUNTRY PROFILE
Centre stage: The country has a long history as a regional trading hub
Interview: President Uhuru Kenyatta
Moving forward: A new constitution has ushered in an era of political change
All together now: Regional integration has been a major focus for the government
Thinking big: New international deals are driving the country forward
Viewpoint: Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan
Interview: Brigitte Zypries, Federal Minister of Economic Affairs and Energy of Germany
One of a kind: The EAC is helping the region to maintain stable growth

ECONOMY
Centre of attention: Sustained economic growth and a reputation as a safe haven for investors has turned the country into a regional powerhouse
Bonded together: Although deficit spending is on the rise, bonds have helped provide funding for large-scale infrastructure projects
All politics is local: Engagement with community leaders in rural areas is critical for firms seeking to do business
Credit check: In the face of liquidity challenges, states are looking to local banks to help bridge funding gaps
Interview: Carole Kariuki, CEO, Kenya Private Sector Alliance
Checks and balances: Giving power to local governments should spur growth and development, not hinder it
Expanding the base: Recent policy reforms and technological advances should help boost the percentage of revenue from tax collection
Interview: Moses Ikiara, Managing Director, Kenya Investment Authority
Interview: Akinwumi Adesina, President, African Development Bank

BANKING
A solid base: Despite its fair share of challenges, fundamentals remain strong
Interview: Patrick Njoroge, Governor, Central Bank of Kenya
The next big thing: Small and medium-sized enterprises are a key growth area for lending
Roundtable: Lamin Manjang, Managing Director and CEO, Standard Chartered Bank Kenya; Joyce-Ann Wainaina, CEO, Citibank; Jeremy Awori, Managing Director, Barclays Bank Kenya

CAPITAL MARKETS
Ahead of the game: Building on strong fundamentals, the Nairobi bourse has set its sights on adding depth and liquidity to its markets
Breaking ground: New instruments launch on the markets
Interview: Paul Muthaura, CEO, Capital Markets Authority
Interview: Geoffrey Gangla, CEO, Genghis Capital
Market analysis & data provided by Genghis Capital
Bond surge: Fixed income segment
A buoyant year: Banking sector
Dialling up: Telecoms sector
Interesting times: Global political changes are affecting the markets

INSURANCE
Getting covered: A largely untapped market shows potential for expansion
Seeds of growth: Agriculture presents a range of options for insurers
Interview: Benson Wairegi, Group Managing Director and CEO, Britam

INDUSTRY & RETAIL
Big picture: A strategy based on manufacturing is boosting a wide range of segments and producers
Top shelf: A growing middle class is encouraging consumer goods producers
Interview: Chris Kirubi, Chairman, Haco Tiger Brands
Setting up shop: A number of developments are in the pipeline for Nairobi
Interview: Phyllis Wakiaga, CEO, Kenya Association of Manufacturers

ENERGY
Supply and demand: Market factors seem to rise in tandem with increased reserve findings and a growing domestic shift in energy consumption
Interview: Dan Kazungu, Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Mining
Law of the land: New bills are deliberated to restructure the energy space and increase operational transparency
Determined digging: Exploration and new legislation is driving the mining sector to capitalise on natural resources
Interview: John Ngumi, Chairman, Kenya Pipeline Company

UTILITIES
Ahead of the curve: Plans are in place to dramatically boost generation capacity
Pooling together: Intra-region power trading is set to increase
Interview: Mugo Kibati, Chairman, Lake Turkana Wind Power
Tariffs and buts: Finding the right level for prices is a delicate balancing act
Alternative measures: Mini-grids are a common solution for those outside the main grid
Independents day: Governments across Africa are seeking to attract private players

TRANSPORT
Along for the ride: Multi-modal upgrades are in the works to maintain the country’s position as East Africa’s transit hub
Interview: Frank Matsaert, CEO, TradeMark East Africa

AGRICULTURE
Hand on the tiller: Improved infrastructure is supporting output and exports
Parcel project: Recent reforms are addressing land acquisition challenges
Interview: Peter Kimanga, Director, Gold Crown Beverages
Boosting growth: Horticulture expansion is supporting niche export products

ICT
Transforming communication: The sector slows in voice and SMS while gearing up for increased competition in data services and mobile money transfer
Access for all: Addressing gaps that still remain, Kenya moves closer to its goal of universal voice and broadband connectivity
Roundtable: Prasanta Das Sarma, Managing Director, Airtel Kenya; Bob Collymore, CEO, Safaricom; Aldo Mareuse, CEO, Telkom Kenya Limited
Expanding usage: Internet penetration is growing as the country aims to maintain its status as a technology centre
Interview: James Mwangi, CEO and Managing Director, Equity Bank
Interview: Mike Macharia, Founder and Group CEO, Seven Seas Technologies

CONSTRUCTION & REAL ESTATE
Commitment to growth: Large-scale infrastructure projects and private financing are helping to drive the sector’s expansion
On the upswing: Urbanisation and a growing population have spurred rapid growth in the cement industry
Interview: Andrew Saisi, CEO, National Housing Corporation
Stand-out performer: Despite short-term challenges, an expanding middle class and rapid economic growth provide strong fundamentals for growth
Interview: Ronald Ndegwa, Managing Director, Savannah Cement

TOURISM
Back on track: After a period of decline, tourism sees its fortunes rise
Meeting demand: With conference tourism numbers on the rise, new hotels and venues are coming on-line
Vacation home: A burgeoning middle class boosts the role of domestic tourism
Peace of mind: Authorities have invested heavily in the state security apparatus

HEALTH & EDUCATION
Taking care: New initiatives aim to increase health care access and quality
On the rise: Micro-insurance and mobile technology are helping increase market penetration
Fund raisers: Recent foreign investments bode well for private health careInterview: Paul Zeleza, Vice-Chancellor, United States International University
Quantity and quality: Education reform seeks to increase access and standards
Skills to pay the bills: A focus on skills-based learning looks to address job shortages

TAX
Across the board: An outline of taxation principles for individuals and businesses
Revenue and relief: Balancing the scales between an expanded national tax base and protecting the citizenry from a high cost of living
Viewpoint: Gitahi Gachahi, CEO, EY Eastern Africa

LEGAL FRAMEWORK
Welcome developments: The recently modernised legal system will ensure a fairer marketplace for participants
Viewpoint: Karim Anjarwalla, Managing Partner, Anjarwalla & Khanna

THE GUIDE
Rest and relaxation: Accommodation options in Nairobi and Mombasa
Listings: Contact information for ministries, embassies and business organisations
Facts for visitors: Important information to know before your visit

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