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Between 2005 and 2015, almost half of all impact capital disbursed in East Africa had found its way into the Kenyan market, representing more than US$650 million of private impact investment capital and more than US$3.6 billion of DFI capital.

Economically, Kenya has seen GDP growth has averaged between four and six per cent annually since 2011 and there is little indication of decline: the World Bank estimates that the annual growth in 2019 will be 6.1 per cent. Foreign direct investment (FDI) in Kenya increased to USD 672 million in 2017 , representing a 71 per cent increase from 2016. This is particularly striking considering the 22 per cent drop in FDI in Africa as a whole and a 23 per cent fall-off globally.  Read more..

The African economy has gathered momentum over the years, with an estimated increase of 3.8% of the real output growth in 2017. As the largest economies gradually strengthen, the 2018/2019 performance should reach 4.1% according to the African Development Bank.

This economic growth and sustainable development has largely been contributed by Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). In Kenya for instance, SMEs contribute approximately 40% to the GDP and employ over half of the country’s workforce.

Yet, becoming a profitable SME in the continent is never a smooth sail for many. Read more..

Mobile payments have for the first time hit Sh2 trillion, reflecting vibrant growth in Kenya’s e-commerce sector. The Q1 2018/19 first report released yesterday by the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) covering July-September shows that 730.2 million transactions valued at Sh2.027 trillion were recorded up from 611.3 million transactions valued at Sh1.9 billion the previous quarter.

Mobile commerce transactions accounted for 76 per cent of total payment value, accounting for Sh1.55 trillion from 526.9 deals, 8.8 per cent increase compared to the previous quarter.

Person-to-person transfers were valued to Sh718.2 billion, with active mobile money transfer subscription growing by 120,000 users to 29.79 million from 29.67 million by end of 2017. Number of registered mobile money agents grew slightly during the quarter under review to 218,495 from 206,940 in June.


Senior representatives in accounting and insurance from 11 countries participated in this event to exchange practices and formulate actions with the aim of expanding financial literacy and access to affordable financial solutions by Micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs).

Participants drew attention to the needs of financial literacy training for business owners and the role of mobile technologies in driving innovation and affordability for financial services.

Meanwhile, they encouraged UNCTAD's efforts in supporting the region to generate an enabling environment for MSMEs to thrive.

Mr. Daniel Owoko, Chief of Staff at UNCTAD, on behalf of the Secretary General, highlighted MSMEs' key role in promoting economic development and tackling youth unemployment.

He stated that, "access to financial services in affordable conditions could be a determining factor in accelerating their contribution to attaining the Sustainable Development Goals and the African Union's Agenda 2063". He also underlined the importance of strengthening regional collaboration to address these challenges and UNCTAD's commitment to facilitate dialogue. READ MORE

Inclusive business practices can help achieve the Sustainable Development Goals while opening up new market opportunities for companies

According to the Better Business Better World report by the Business & Sustainable Development Commission, achieving the Global Goals could open up an estimated US$12 trillion in market opportunities in four economic systems: food and agriculture, cities, energy and materials, and health and well-being. They represent around 60 percent of the real economy and are critical to delivering the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 

Seizing such opportunities will require revitalized and enhanced partnerships. The long and difficult process of building and nurturing partnerships with concerned stakeholders could potentially result in an outcome that is more than just the sum of its parts.

Achieving the ambitious targets of the 2030 Agenda will require mobilizing all available resources and bringing together local and national authorities, civil society, the private sector, the United Nations system, and all other actors. READ MORE

Africa ‘subsidises’ the rest of the world to the tune of $41bn (£32bn) a year, according to a new analysis of the amount of money flowing in and out of the continent.

The Honest Accounts 2017 report by Global Justice Now, the Jubilee Debt Campaign and other groups estimated the total amount going into sub-Saharan Africa at $161.6bn, while the total amount going out was put at $202.9bn.

The outflows included debt repayments by governments and the private sector, multinational company profits, the ‘brain drain’ effect, illegal logging, fishing and poaching, and costs associated with climate change, a problem largely caused by Europe, America and other developed countries. READ MORE

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