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Kenya – African Development Bank adopts new 5-yr plan to boost growth and human development

KENYA / AFRICA – The board of directors of the African Development Bank Group on 14 December 2023 approved a new five-year Country Strategy Paper (CSP) for Kenya. The 2024-2028 CSP focuses on boosting private sector-driven growth through infrastructure development, strategic reforms, and human capital development.

The bank’s country office said these priority areas will complement each other and build on what has already been achieved with the bank’s assistance while continuing to support Kenya’s vision of structural transformation and strengthening resilience.

“Our support, within the context of the new CSP 2024-2028, will be selectively focused on four sectors: transport, water, economic governance and skills development,” said Zerihun Gudeta Alemu, the bank’s chief country economist in Kenya.

To boost growth, the African Development Bank’s interventions will target reducing transport costs and travel time, improving access to affordable water and sanitation services and increasing agricultural production capacity using irrigation to combat food insecurity in the country.

The bank will also finance operations in the energy sector to bolster private sector development and reduce the cost of doing business. The expected primary outcomes include improving commute times for public-sector transport from 40 km/hour (2022) to 60 km/hour by 2028, as well as lowering transport operating costs from $0.85 to 0.50 per kilometre per vehicle and increasing industrial water treatment capacity from 1,000 m3 daily in 2022 to 6,000 m3 by 2028.

Regarding developing human capital, the bank will support the Kenyan government’s projects that encourage the development of human capabilities in higher education institutions. The Bank’s operation will be designed to open investment prospects for transforming education and training by developing relationships between industrial sectors aligned with labour market needs.

In the long term, the number of young people and women with relevant skills for the labour market should increase, while the number of graduates from higher education institutions in employment is expected to reach 40 percent by 2028, compared with 10 percent in 2023. In addition, the number of sustainable businesses created by young entrepreneurs should increase from 500 in 2023 to 2,000 in 2028.

As of July 2023, the African Development Bank Group’s active portfolio in Kenya comprised 51 projects, with a total commitment of $4.02 billion.

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