KAM members are attending the KAM-KRA Seminar at Panafric Hotel Nairobi today. The seminar was organised to review the Single Customs Territory and New Export Procedures.
H. E Governor Joshua Irungu of Laikipia County meets KAM members at the Beisa Hotel where the Laikipia Governor's Roundtable
For Africa to thrive in business, they should observe responsibility and success. This was highlighted during a one day conference in Nairobi hosted by a group of local German organisations led by the former President of the Federal Republic of Germany, Dr. Horst Köhler and attended by the East African entrepreneurs and manufacturers.
The meeting cohosted by the Kenya Association of Manufacturers and dubbed ‘German Meeting Colloquium’ is the first of its kind and was organised so that German investors can meet with local businessmen to help them discover and discuss business opportunities in the region.
Dr. Kohler said that for Africa to rise beyond its capacity in business, the rule of law, functioning institutions and a fair and efficient tax system should be implemented for east African businesses to thrive.
Dr. Köhler went further to say that the right kind of investment should take the country forward so that jobs are created. The benefits of this would be better health care, well structured education and better infrastructure. He reiterated the responsibility of African politics to create the necessary and sufficient conditions for both private and public investment and blamed irresponsible African politics for the increase in illicit capital flows that rob the continent of about USD 50 billion annually.
The government has the responsibility of creating a business environment that has less restriction but a lot of freedom. Business freedom will in turn breed a motivated workforce that can deliver sustained profits for both local and international markets.
During the panel sessions, the German delegation discussed with their African counterparts east African related issues such as the economic integration of the EAC, industrial issues, infrastructure and energy development.
Panelists were quick to identify agriculture as another venture that the EAC should invest in claiming that the middle-class is making money due to increased agricultural activity in the region. Discussions also dwelt on the effects of global warming as a challenge to the human race and the international community was asked to implement an effective climate regime to cut down on carbon monoxide usage.
This is the main theme of the training currently going on at Sarova Stanely for the next two days. The Manufacturing Academy has partnered with KPMG to train on procurement fraud which is endemic in many organisations. The participants were drawn mainly from local manufacturing institutions.
Industrial Area Chapter
The Chapter Caretaker Committee Formed
KAM Industrial Area Chapter’s caretaker committee held its first meeting on 24th April at Osho Chemicals’ boardroom. During the meeting, the following were confirmed as committee members;
- Manoj Shah-Osho Chemical Industries (Chapter Chair)
- Manish Shah-Polyflex Industries (Chapter Vice Chair)
- Hezekiah Macharia-Twiga Chemicals Ltd (Chapter Treasurer)
- Amir Parpia-Alpha Fine Foods (Member)
- Mary Gesare-Elys Chemicals (Member)
- Nashir Kassam-Sadolin Paints (Member)
- Robert Juma-KAM (Secretary to Committee)
Mr. Tobias Alando, KAM’s head of membership development took the committee through their roles at the chapter level and the relationship with the head office. Noting that Industrial Area chapter accounts for the largest overall KAM membership, the committee agreed to incorporate more members to represent various sectors operating in Industrial Area. The official launch of the chapter will be held after the complete committee is in place on a date to be communicated. Join me in congratulating this team as they help drive the chapter agenda on behalf of the manufacturing fraternity in Industrial Area.
Your Security is Assured-Deputy County Commissioner/OCPD affirms
Mr. Suleiman Chege, DCC Makadara
Following two incidences of shooting along Lunga Lunga road and some cases of robbery with violence in Industrial Area, the Makadara deputy county commissioner Mr. Suleiman Chege has assured the business community of their security. Reacting to one of the shooting incidences involving a senior staff of one of KAM member companies, Mr. Chege sought to make it clear to all criminal gangs trying to find their way back to the streets that their days are numbered.
On his part, the Makadara OCPD Mr. Nehemiah Langat made it very clear that no such cases will be tolerated, urging civilians to promptly report any leads that may help the police apprehend these criminals. However, he noted that most break-ins are aided, especially by security guards or other members of staff. Companies are therefore urged to screen their employees for past involvement in criminal activities. There will be more police patrols in strategic areas to curb any similar occurrences in future. The chapter will call for a meeting soon to discuss this further, the date will be communicated.
Our hands are tied: Laments County Roads Department
The poor state of Nairobi county roads, including those in Industrial Area is attributed to lack of sufficient resources. According to senior officials at the Nairobi County government’s roads department, financial constraints and low staff capacity are only but some of the challenges that the department has to deal with as it seeks to improve the road network in the city. Christine Ogut, the chief officer in the department argues that they are trying to achieve more with very limited resources, a factor that leads to delayed payment of contractors and even incomplete projects. Appearing before the Couny Assembly Public Accounts Committee (PAC), Ms. Ogut said that bureaucratic procedures currently in place affect procurement, payment of contractors and internal costs.
It is unfortunate that out of the 2,977km road network in Nairobi, over half are in deplorable conditions, while 31% are fair and only 16% in good condition. The roads department requires about 224 billion to address this issue. The Kenya Association of Manufacturers has been championing for the rehabilitation
of most roads that immensely affect transport, results in avoidable traffic congestions and delays in
delivery of important production material to industries as well as finished goods to final consumers.
Investment Quote of the Month: “In investing, what is comfortable is rarely profitable.” Robert Arnott
NYANZA/ WESTERN CHAPTER
The Homa bay county Governors round table(GRT) was held in April at the Homa bay tourist hotel, the GRT brought together representatives from Business Membership Organizations (BMOs’) and the business community in Homa bay county. The county government was represented by H.E the Governor Cyprian Awiti, Deputy Governor and members of the County executive committee. KAM was represented by the chapter vice chair Ms Joyce Opondo, Treasurer Jayesh Patel and committee member Vimal Rabadia.
In their presentation, businesses cited rising cost of doing business, poor service delivery by the county government, lack of an integrated physical plan leading to haphazard and unplanned development, lack of a sound legal and regulatory framework - there lacks a sound framework and policies to guide and set principles for addressing issues - as the main issues hindering businesses within the county.
In his address Governor Cyprian Awiti expressed his gratitude for the concerted effort by KAM, Homabay business community and County trade department in launching the Homabay county business round table. He recognized the platform as a crucial tool for engagement between the county and the business community. “The round table was long overdue,” he said.
Governor Cyprian Awiti addressing participants during the round table
The Governor outlined his Governments achievement and plans for the Energy, Public finance management, and Infrastructure and trade sectors
“The county government is already working with KPLC to install alternative power supply to the current single line which is old and prune to failure during bad weather,” said Governor Awiti.
“We are partnering with 3 investors to inject 40MW into their grid. This will help to stabilize and offer sustainable power supply to businesses,” he added.
The Governor also indicated that the Homabay County draft budget for 2014/2015 is currently undergoing public consultative review and inputs. The county is also working on an investment policy to set out selection, decision making process, procedures and relevant measurement indexes to assess the ongoing investment options.
“In our quest to ease doing business in the county, the Homabay county finance draft bill, which is currently undergoing public scrutiny, has proposed simplified business friendly taxation regimes. The bill is open to public inputs, before being tabled in the County Assembly,” said the Governor.
The Governor also said the county government also seeks to establish Homabay County Commercial and Industrialization agency. The agency mandate will be to oversee identification and implementation of viable investment enterprises.
In conclusion the Governor indicated that provision for quarterly round tables with the business community is included in the upcoming investment policy.
“This is a step towards demonstrating the county government’s commitment to dialogue and promoting participation in the county business agenda,” said the Governor.
Speaking at the same occasion, the CEC in charge of Trade Prof. Tom Ogada indicated that through Homabay County Strategic plan a sector approach based on trade development, Co-operative development, investment promotion and SMEs development has been hatched. Along with this, the county has established a trade fund to cater for SMEs development. Nine million shillings has been allocated to the fund for the year 2014/2015. The fund will be managed by a joint loans board.
To improve security and encourage a 24hr economy, Prof Ogada said the ministry of trade is working closely with the ministry of Energy and natural resources to have the major markets in Rangwe, Mbita and Homabay town installed with lights during 2014/2015 period.
“Another area of focus with a lot of potential to create wealth and employment opportunities is agro-processing and value addition,” said Prof Ogada. He added that the county government aims to establish 12 factories in agro-processing and value addition.
“Already four factories are in the process of being established in Kabongo, Ringa and Ongoro areas; these are for potato processing. The county government is also partnering with ICDC on pineapple processing, and already a 6 acres piece of land has been identified to put up a pineapple processing factory. As a major producer of omena, there are plans to have an animal feed factory to take advantage of the readily available raw materials. In line with this, farmers in each of the 40 wards have been provided with hatcheries for chicken rearing projects,” said Prof Ogada.
Business community holds a security meeting
The business community in Kisumu recently held a security meeting at the Aga khan hall, Kisumu attended but various BMO’s, business community and residents. Also attending was the County security team led by the County Commissioner Mrs. Lorna Odero, the County Commander Kenya Police Mr. Ngetich with the Governor HE Jack Ranguma leading the county government team.
In his address the Governor said that the senate has been very rigid in their support for security within the county as the function was not devolved. Even though the senate is hard on us, my Government will donate 7 patrol vehicles to the county police, said the Governor. The Governor said insecurity was a very big concern to him as no investor would want to put his money where he is not sure of security.
“The greatest driver of investment is security,” said the Governor. “It’s our responsibility as Government and also partners to provide security, we need to embrace ideas from businesses and residents and not pass the buck,” noted Governor Ranguma.
“Massive unemployment is a monster and the county must create employment to stop insecurity,” added Governor Ranguma. “Commercialization of Agriculture is ignored but it’s the driver of economic prosperity,” he said.
“After the County Integrated Development Plan, we will organize an Investors conference,” noted the Governor. “There is no need of looking for investors abroad if we can’t take care of the existing ones, let’s have local businesses expand and re invest,” added the Governor.
Speaking at the function the County Commissioner Ms. Lorna Odera urged businesses and representatives from Government to have timelines for the proposals.
The County commander Kenya Police Mr. Ngetich noted that the police was trying its best with the limited resources available. He also added that there was need for continuous interactive stakeholder’s forums.
KAM/ Kenya Power Luncheon on 30th May 2014 at Imperial Hotel, Kisumu
Climate Change workshop at Royal City Hotel, Kisumu on 29th May 2014
Work with National Government – Counties urged
Counties have been urged to work together with the national Government in order to enable them grow their economies. Speaking during a forum to discuss the second Medium Term Plan (2013-2017) held at Castle Royal Hotel, the Principal Secretary for Tourism Mr. Ibrahim Mohamed said counties are better of working with the national Government as opposed to isolating themselves. “For counties to grow their economies they shouldn’t work in isolation at all,” he said.
The 2nd Medium term plan comes after the successive First Medium Plan under Vision 2030. The Kenya Vision 2030 aims to make Kenya a middle income country by 2030. The delivery of the target is driven by a series of 5 year Medium Term Plans (MTPs)
Stakeholders attending the 2nd Medium Term plan meeting at Castle Royal
Since the inception of the first MTP Kenya adopted a new constitution which significantly altered the governance framework by creating a two tier government- a national government and 47 county governments
The MTP will integrate the proposed international community development goals now known as Global sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for the post 2015. The SDGs are a follow up to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) that Kenya Implemented and made significant progress.
The Principal Secretary confirmed that “We have achieved a lot of progress so far under the First Medium term plan 2007-2012,this includes enrollment in early childhood education which has increased by 40% from 1.72 million in 2008 to 2.4 million.”
Ibrahim Mohamed also mentioned that” the transition rate from primary to secondary education increased from 645 in 2008 to 77 % in 2012, three undersea submarine fiber optic network linking Kenya to the global internet network have been completed,”
The first MTP has also seen a total of 2,200km of roads constructed against the MTP target of 1,500km, total installed capacity of electricity increased by 22% and enactment of the Constitution of Kenya (2010).
However it was mentioned that there are critical issues that need to be addressed. These include Low domestic savings and investments, low per capita income, high level of unemployment, high energy costs, inefficiencies in rail and port operations, upsurge in non communicable diseases across the country and global pandemics and threats emanating from climate change. The Second MTP outlines key priority areas that Government will implement over the plan period.
Constitution and Devolution, National Cohesion, Security ,Drought Emergencies and food security, Equity in access to opportunities and lower cost of living,Health,Education,Infrastructure,Industrilisation,improved Trade ,investment to support growth. Strengthening social protection, Land reforms, Arts and Sports Culture and Governance and Public Financial Management reforms.
Speaking at the same occasion the Mombasa county Secretary urged the public to be extra vigilant in matters pertaining to security and report any suspicious character.
“Let us help the government by giving police information on terrorists, their activities and plans when we get such information,” he said.
Energy audit participants visit Kenya Shirts Manufacturers
This year’s energy audit training took place at White sands Hotel in Mombasa. A total 36 participants attended the forum.
The team of participants attended a three-day in house training and on the fourth day paid a visit to Kenya Shirts Manufacturers ,where they were met by Ajul Shah the Managing Director.
The practical energy audit entailed, checking of the boiler readings, number of windows and how they affect the lighting in the room and measurement of floor space.
Eng. Magerere doing practical Energy audit, at Kenya Shirts manufacturing
Chapter meets Kilifi Finance County Executive
KAM Coast Chapter Officer Susan Gitau and the Executive officer of the Salt Sub sector Eunice Mwanyallo paid a courtesy call to the County Executive in charge of finance for Kilifi John Kombe, on the 16th April 2014.
The main objective of the meeting was to extend a hand of collaboration to the County Government as the business community and establish a framework for future consultations with KAM on issues affecting business like the county Finance Bill as well as protest against reversing the mode of payment for cess from monthly by cheque to daily in cash.
Speaking during the meeting Kombe acknowledged the role of the business community and promised to involve them in matters touching on business.
“I appreciate your patience despite the fact that I have postponed the meeting twice. I recognize the role of business community and I promise to involve you in the planning and execution stages of the forthcoming Finance bill,” said Kombe.
The Coast chapter officer assured the CE that KAM is supportive towards development projects in Kilifi County, however, “It’s only through consultation that the business community will appreciate the County Government’s efforts,” said Susan.
Concerns were raised on the modality of payments from monthly payment by cheque to daily cash for cess and the CE indicated that the county was cash strapped and was looking for ways of creating cash flow.
Kombe mentioned that there are ongoing plans to work out payment through Debit Cards for all services in the county.
When asked about the progress on the Finance bill Kombe said that the bill had been overtaken by events and plans are underway to come up with a 2014-2015 draft bill and that efforts will be made to involve all stakeholders
Mr. Kombe directed that the Salt Sub sector writes a letter to him on the mode of payment for cess and a meeting will be scheduled between the salt sector and the finance office to deliberate on the matter as well as sharing of the Finance Draft bill 2014-2015.
Kiambu County Government lifts ban on change of land user
The Kiambu county government has lifted a ban on change of land use that had been issued last year. The ban was lifted after a successful completion of the land use zoning to guide proper utilization of land.
Through a public notice issued by Administration Executive Wilson Maroa, developers were advised that all applications (subdivisions, building plans, laying of Fiber Optic Cables, Change and Extension of User, Extension of Leases) etc. must be submitted for vetting at respective Sub-county Planning offices and that advertisement for the Change of User shall be undertaken at the instructions of the County Government and at the applicants’ cost.
Kiambu Lands Executive Esther Kaloki, Deputy Governor Gerald Githinji and Land Development and Governance Institute chairman Ibrahim Mwathane
The county government had halted all change-of-land-use transactions until they designate agricultural and commercial areas. The County Executive Committee Member in Charge of Lands & Physical Planning Eunice Kaloki said that the temporary stoppage of change of user was aimed at safeguarding tea and coffee which had quickly been taken over by the booming housing sector in the county.
The Institute of Surveyors of Kenya had last month denounced the move by some counties including Kiambu, Elgeyo Marakwet and Kajiado to halt the transactions as they sort out the mess in their land records and master plans. However, Kiambu has established a ward-based service delivery structure to help with prompt service delivery across the county.
Kiambu County Business Agenda validated
Kiambu Couty Deputy Governor H.E Gerald Githinji and Central Kenya Chapter Chairman Mr. Rajan Shah during the breakfast meeting
The Kiambu County Business Agenda was validated on 15th April 2014, at the Windsor Golf Hotel & Country Club during a breakfast meeting attended by officials of BMO’s in Kiambu County. KAM Central Chapter Chairman Rajan Shah reiterated the need for a conducive environment for business.
“The business community only requires an enabling environment from the County government and we will do the rest of the work. Regular dialogue and constant conversations are the only way out to foster collaboration on the county’s business agenda,” said Rajan.
The County Executive Committee members (CECs) present each gave a presentation on the progress in their dockets. The CEC for Roads & Infrastructure informed the meeting that they had already graded 500 KM out of the 5000KM of roads in the county and work was ongoing. However the issue of quality was raised which she responded by saying that they were ensuring high quality of the work done.
The newly elected County Assembly Speaker Mr. Gathii Irungu said that he is keen on public participation and assured the private sector that for any new laws and policies, the assembly will seek the opinion and input from the stakeholders as required by law.
The Deputy Governor in his closing remarks thanked the business community for their continued support and reiterated that the county government is doing all it can to provide a conducive business environment.
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