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Counties which hinder business to be named and shamed in new plan

Friday December 13 2019
munya

Trade Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya. FILE PHOTO | NATION MEDIA GROUP

By PAUL WAFULA

The government is coming up with a model that will name and shame counties with the worst business environment for investors.

Trade Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya said the model, that will rank counties in terms of their friendliness to investors, is being developed by Kenya Investment Authority (KenInvest).

“KenInvest is working on the model that will be neutral from politics. We can do so much at the national level but if counties do not do the same, then we will not achieve the desired goals,” Mr Munya said.

He gave an example of the delays in giving building approval permits in Nairobi County that continue to be a pain for many investors.

“KenInvest now has a one-stop shop for all government services and all officers from Nema (National Environment Authority) and other government agencies have a desk there. However, we still have some investors who are still doing these errands on their own, hopping from one office to the other and then come to us to complain,” Mr Munya said.

He said the government would continue to support industries and to create the right environment for both home-grown companies and foreign investors to thrive.

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“The Trade, Industry and Co-operatives ministry is working to reduce the multiplicity of laws, regulations and levies across the counties that have been cited as a hindrance to businesses. As Kenya improves in the Ease of Doing Business Index, we also appreciate the need to improve the country’s competitiveness,” said Mr Munya.

He was speaking during a function to commission the new offices of East African Breweries at Garden City and a new logo of the firm which was designed by a 24-year-old graduate of Multimedia University, Mr Elvis Otieno.

Elvis was among 19 individuals and one group who were selected as finalists from more than 300 designs submitted to EABL’s logo competition.

Kenya’s Doing Business ranking improved five places this year to position 56 globally, according to the latest World Bank report, which also shows that slow registration of property and starting a business remain the biggest hindrance.

EABL Group chief executive officer Andrew Cowan said the company will invest Sh22 billion in sustainability. “We have recently committed Sh22 billion aimed at using biomass to replace fossil fuels, removing 42,000 tonnes of carbon from our footprint,” he said.

The firm said it was commissioning more brewing vessels into the Kisumu brewery this month.

“This alone underwrites further commitment to the 17,000 farmers supplying us with sorghum in the region. More brewing vessels making more beer need more sorghum,” said Mr Cowan.

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