Kenya aiming to be the best country in Africa in ease of doing business by 2022

President Uhuru Kenyatta greets leaders ahead of his state of the nation address at Parliament. Photo/PSCU

Kenya is aiming to be the best country in Africa for doing business by 2022, according to President Uhuru Kenyatta. Kenya’s position in the ease of doing business index is 56th globally and 3rd in Sub Saharan Africa, climbing 80 slots since 2014. Locally, the President has outlined that the government has heeded calls to reduce regulatory burdens brought about by multiplicity of licenses at the national and County level, “Our initial focus in Nairobi City County has seen the waiver of single business permits for all new businesses registered in Nairobi for the first 2 years of their operations, effective March this year,” he said, adding that the government has also waived the presumptive tax requirement for all new businesses.

The two initiatives are among steps taken in the ease of doing business programme that will be rolled out nationwide in order to make it easier for local and international investors to set up businesses. Kenya also ranks 1st in protecting minority investors and 4th in getting credit globally. He said the number of companies being registered in the country daily has increased from 30 in 2014 to 200 in 2020, equating to a 500% increase. “On aggregate, 400,000 companies are annually now registered in Kenya.”

Highlighting developments in the international markets during his state of the nation address on Thursday, he said deepening integration in the EAC has led to increased benefits for Kenya, with exports within the EAC jumping to a six-year high. He said engagements are ongoing with the United Kingdom to find an arrangement that will guarantee Kenya a continued access to the UK market following its exit from the European Union. Consultations are also ongoing with the US on the AGOA deal, “We are proactively consulting with the United States of America for a solution that will ensure Kenya’s continued access to the United States market beyond 2025 when the African Growth and Opportunity Act comes to an end without the need for that Pact’s further renewal.”