A new report from the World Economic Forum has placed Kenya in the top 100 most competitive nations on the planet. The Global Competitiveness Report 2013-2014 was released earlier today and places Kenya at position 96 on the list. Today’s news represents a jump of ten places from last year, on the back of economic and political reforms in the sub-Saharan country.
Competitiveness in Kenya
Kenya did very well on some of the measures used by the World Economic Forum to get a proxy for competitiveness. The country came in at number 31 in terms of economic strength. Much of that increase is due to the country’s well-developed financial markets, which are turning it into a financial hub in Africa.
Kenya also did well on confidence in its institutions. The report placed Kenya at number 88 on that metric. The increase in confidence in Kenya’s institutions was largely responsible for the increase in overall competitiveness, according to the report. There were some low notes in the report for Kenya, however. The country came in at 121st on health and 131 in terms of security, two major indicators of investment safety in the country.
Kenya is currently instituting a plan called Vision 2030, which uses the Competitiveness metric from the World Economic Forum as one of the major factors to judge its success. The plan is hoped to quickly develop the country, and judging by this report it has gone a long way in doing so.
Local news source Capitalfm.co.ke quoted the chairman of the Vision 2030 Delivery Board James Mwangi’s response to the report, saying, “The overarching goal of Kenya Vision 2030 is to transform the country into a globally competitive and prosperous nation with a high quality of life for its citizens by the year 2030.”
“Today, I am excited and glad to note that in line with the overall goals and spirit of Vision 2030, Kenya’s global competitiveness is now on a growth trajectory, effectively confirming that Vision 2030 is progressive.” Kenya should be proud of its achievements, but as the title of Vision 2030 suggests, there’s a long way to go yet.
Kenya is setting up a $1.5 billion bond issuance at the moment, taking advantage of low interest rates in order to provide capital for infrastructure. The issuance will be the biggest sub-Saharan African bond sale of all time.